Set Yourself Apart


I keep the LORD in mind always. Because He is at my right hand, I will not be shaken. — Psalm 16:8


Larry Bird, Magic Johnson, Michael Jordan. They stood out as great NBA players, but they had a certain quality that did not show up in the box score. It was the ability to make the players around them better. They added value to their teammates, and they could see the bigger picture. Success for them was inevitable.

Likewise, Jesus calls us to see the bigger picture of His kingdom as we influence others for His sake. Every day, we encounter fellow coaches, students, players—even our family—who might need our help so that they can get to the next level, not just for their sake but for His.

The story in Mark 2 reflects this theme. A man who was a paralytic needed help to get to Jesus so he could receive healing. His friends had difficulty getting him through the crowd that had gathered to hear the Lord, so they broke through the roof and lowered the paralytic into the room where Jesus was speaking. Mark wrote that when Jesus saw their faith, the paralytic received his healing. These friends were absolutely determined to help their friend get better!

Coach John Wooden calls this quality “competitive greatness.” It is delivering our best when our best is needed while making those around us better. The paralytic’s friends weren’t superstars, but they rose to the occasion. Jesus Christ saw their faith and He, too, could not keep from offering His best so the others around Him might become the people God had always intended them to be. In fact, the Son of Man took on our brokenness so we might know His greatness! Abiding in that truth each day keeps us focused on the bigger picture of God’s kingdom.


1. Are you adding value to those around you?
2. Who is helping you get to the next level as a Christian and as a coach?
3. Do you recognize competitive greatness in others?


Extra Reading: 1 Samuel 17:1–58; Matthew 28:16–20; Mark 2:1–12


Lord, help me today to abide in You, knowing that as I do, You will equip me to give my best so others might grow closer to becoming the people You want them to be. Amen.