“But He said to me, ‘My grace is sufficient for you, for power is perfected in weakness.’ Therefore, I will most gladly boast all the more about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may reside in me. So I take pleasure in weaknesses, insults, catastrophes, persecutions, and in pressures, because of Christ. For when I am weak, then I am strong.” - 2 Corinthians 12:9-10
Ready. What does it take to be ready for your season to start? It takes physical training—a lot of it. But it also takes an extensive amount of mental training. What will you do when you step up to the line or into the box?
The mental part seems trivial sometimes because we mostly like to trust what we can see and feel, which is the physical part of the game. But when it comes down to the wire and the game is on the line, it’s the battle 6 inches between our ears that either says, “I’m done; I can’t,”, or “I’m strong enough. Bring it on.”
Our performance depends on our physical strength to keep us going, but what do we do when our body says “ENOUGH”? What do we rely on to keep us going? Everyone has his or her own motivation, but, for me, when I know I’m about to step up to the line for a run test, the thing that keeps me focused is God’s Word. I repeat to myself, “When I am weak, You are strong,” which comes from 2 Corinthians 12:9-10.
In this passage, Paul is talking about strength and persecution, and about being able to stand firm in these situations. It isn’t easy to stand up to someone who is persecuting you. Can you imagine what it would be like to have your life threatened for what you believe? But Paul was always ready. He always came with an answer. And when he was faced with persecution, he looked it in the face and said essentially, “Bring it on.”
The Bible tells us to always be ready to respond (1 Peter 3:15), and I think we can apply this to our spiritual lives just like we do our sports. In the same way that we need to be ready to respond mentally in our games, we need to be ready to respond when we are asked what we believe. It isn’t enough to be physically ready. That’s made clear in 1 Timothy 4:8 (NIV), which says, “For physical training is of some value, but godliness has value for all things, holding promise for both the present life and the life to come.”
We also have to ready our minds. If we don’t, we’re likely to panic rather than to perform at our top ability in the midst of a game-changing situation. For me, this means stepping up to the line saying, “When I am weak, then You are strong;” getting rid of those negative thoughts; and truly believing that, when I don’t think I can go on, God will carry me through. What does it mean for you?
Today, let’s be prepared and get ready.
1. How do you prepare mentally for a game? How do you know when you are mentally ready? 2. How do you prepare your mind spiritually? How do you know when you are prepared? 3. How can you be more spiritually ready for daily challenges?
1 Peter 3:13-16