If You Only Knew
“Don’t boast about tomorrow, for you don’t know what a day might bring.” - Proverbs 27:1
Many people read horoscopes or call psychics in an effort to know the future. On a spiritual level, we know these are dark and dangerous practices that we should avoid, but I think there’s also a practical reason why we shouldn’t know what the future holds.
As athletes and coaches, we’ve all lost games, suffered injuries, been benched or experienced other disappointments. And most likely, if we’d known about the trials ahead of time, we would have chosen another route. Our brains are actually wired to control levels of pain, so we naturally chose pleasure over it. However, if we always avoided pain, we’d miss out on the amazing things that have resulted because from our trials.
You may be thinking, “There’s no way good has come out of what I’ve faced.” I hear you. But take a look at Romans 5:3-4: “And not only that, but we also rejoice in our afflictions, because we know that affliction produces endurance, endurance produces proven character, and proven character produces hope.” In reality, all of our experiences—good and bad—have brought us to this very moment in time.
I’ll give you an example. In my life I went through a very difficult season related to my job. Given the option, maybe I shouldn’t have accepted the job in the first place. But it was at that job that a colleague challenged me to run a marathon. Had I not run that marathon, I may not have made the decision to find a sports ministry. Had I not researched various sports ministries, I would not have found FCA, and I would have missed out on being used by God in this great ministry. And you wouldn’t be reading this devotional.
But God hasn’t left the future totally untold. He gives us the basics to help give us hope and increase our faith. In John 13 Jesus speaks to His disciples about His coming betrayal and Peter’s denial. Then, He starts the next chapter by saying, “Your heart must not be troubled,” before He goes on to explain that He is leaving but will be returning. In verse 27, Jesus says, “Peace I leave with you. My peace I give to you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Your heart must not be troubled or fearful.” Not only does Jesus tell the disciples of future events, He offers comfort and encouragement. The future wasn’t going to be pleasant, and they weren’t going to understand why it had to happen, but they were to maintain their peace trusting Him and knowing that one day it would all make sense.
Today, do not be frustrated by not knowing your future. Don’t wish your struggles would never come. Instead, find peace in the One who holds your future and focus on being the best athlete or coach you can.
- Think back to one of your most challenging seasons in your sport. What were some of the positive things that came out of it for you and/or your team?
- Do you trust God with your future? Why or why not?
- How do you view your present challenges? What do you need to do to look at them through the eyes of faith?
- How will it benefit you and your teammates to look at your challenges with a faith-filled mind?
- Jeremiah 29:11
- 2 Corinthians 4:17-18
- 2 Corinthians 12:9-11
“Father, thank You for loving me so much that You sent Your Son to die on the cross for me. I recognize that my struggles cannot compare with the pain Jesus endured on my behalf. Help me to find the peace and courage to move forward with You. I believe all things are possible with You, Father, and that this challenge has purpose. In the name of Jesus Christ I pray. Amen.”