Element of Surprise


Don’t worry about anything, but in everything, through prayer and petition with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses every thought, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus. — Philippians 4:6–7



Fans hold their breath and sit on the edge of their seats. Then, it happens—that unexpected play that no one saw coming. In every sporting event, at any time, the element of surprise can alter a game’s momentum. One tick of the clock can take a coach through numerous emotions. In these defining moments we can learn great lessons about following Christ.

As we play the game, we never know what ups or downs might occur. Christ never promised His followers that life would be easy. But we have hope in the midst of the unknown. God has won the victory for us through the death and resurrection of His Son Jesus Christ. So anything we face can be overcome when we follow God’s game plan.

My old high school coach had a sign on the wall that said, “If you fail to plan, you plan to fail.” As coaches, we look for ways to develop the complete athlete. Just as we pour knowledge and training into our athletes, so Christ wants to pour the same into us. If we are to be complete followers of Christ, then we must train by studying God’s playbook, the Bible. When we study His Word on a daily basis, God can prepare us for anything that comes our way.

We face many trials. But God always has the best interest of His followers in mind. We must learn to praise Him no matter what—even when things are not clear to us. By praising God, we acknowledge our trust in Him to complete what He is doing in us, regardless of the circumstances.


1. Do you need to ask God for help with a difficult situation in your life?
2. Are you reading the Bible daily to prepare yourself for His solution?
3. Are you able to praise God no matter the circumstances?


Extra Reading: Psalm 92:1; Philippians 1:6; Hebrews 4:12; 1 Peter 1:6–7


Lord, whatever comes my way today, I praise Your name. Give me Your power to overcome and be victorious. Prepare me through studying Your Word to live for You. Amen.