The Coach's Prayer
Once Jesus was in a certain place praying. As he finished, one of his disciples came to him and said, “Lord, teach us to pray, just as John taught his disciples.” – Luke 11:1
While playing professional lacrosse for the Baltimore Thunder, I was asked by my teammates to pray in the locker room before each game. Before a crucial playoff game, one of my teammates leaned into the huddle right before I was about to pray and said, “Make this a good one. We need this win!”
Over the years, I have reflected many times on his comment. I understand why he said it; he wanted us to win, and he wanted to make sure the “Big Guy” upstairs was on our side. He saw prayer as a rabbit’s foot…just a lucky charm. For him, the prayer formula was: good prayer = win; bad prayer = lose.
What he didn’t understand is prayer isn’t about winning and losing, rather transformation and surrender. It’s about becoming more like Jesus, dying to the flesh, and being filled with the Holy Spirit. Coaches and athletes need to understand that prayer isn’t for the battle, it is the battle. It is the key to discovering the heart of God.
Prayer isn’t for the battle.
Prayer is the battle.
As a coach, God has entrusted you with the responsibility to shape lives. You need to be a good steward of the gifts God have given to you to influence others. Remember, coaching is a gift from God that brings blessing, joy, and character. It is a temporary role, and you are held accountable. Therefore, you need prayer to help you maximize your coaching by allowing God to turn you into a transformational, praying coach.
I wrote The Coach’s Prayer so that coaches have a practical way to pray. It’s not about praying for a win, but winning God’s way. It’s not telling God what He already knows, but God revealing to you what you don’t know. It’s about revelation, discernment, and understanding.
The Coach’s Prayer
Lord, when I pick up the whistle, lace up my shoes and walk out of the locker room, I coach for You alone. There is no turning back. In every victory and every defeat, I celebrate Your goodness and greatness. The way I coach demonstrates my love for You. I stand for the cross and declare my loyalty to You. I coach for You.
My energy and enthusiasm come from the Holy Spirit. My purpose and passion come from above. Through the strain and struggle, I never give up or give in. The champion inside of me is Jesus who gives me strength. Winning is honoring You in all I do. I coach for You.
When I coach, I feel Your pleasure. My heart longs for Your applause alone. All of my abilities are from You. I am under Your authority as my Ultimate Coach. I will respect and honor all competitors, coaches, and officials. I compete by all of the rules. I coach for You.
My coaching is my offering to my Savior. I am Your warrior in the heat of battle. I am humble in victory and gracious in defeat. I coach to serve You, my athletes, and our opponents. My words bring healing and refreshment that inspire and motivate. I speak words of life. I coach for You.
Success isn’t a winning program, but seeing the power of Christ transform the lives of my athletes. Victory is not the scoreboard, but for my athletes to become more like You. Bless my athletes in great ways and increase their faith and confidence. I coach for You.
In the name of Jesus, I pray. Amen.
Remember, lift up your athletes through prayer daily. God will use your prayers to transform lives. Pray well. Coach well.
- How do you currently pray for your athletes? How do you need to pray for your athletes?
- What part of The Coach’s Prayer resonated the most with you?
- How can The Coach’s Prayer help you? How can you integrate it into your coaching?
- Job 42:10
- 1 Timothy 2:1
- Philippians 4:6
- 2 Chronicles 7:14
“Father, give me the wisdom how to coach in a Christ-like manner and the courage to put it into action. Develop a heart of prayer in me. I want to stand in the gap through prayer for my athletes. They are counting on me to cover them in prayer daily. Fill me up with your Holy Spirit. I need you more than ever. In Jesus’ name, amen.”