Valuing Others Above Ourselves
“Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit. Rather, in humility value others above yourselves.” - Philippians 2:3
Being part of a team is one of the most rewarding experiences we can participate in, right? There is something special about training alongside our peers through gritty workouts, painful races or challenging games. I specialized in long distance events as a member of the swim team at Clemson University; completing my fair share of grueling workouts and races.
Throughout our careers as athletes, it can be easy to fall into the mindset of thinking sports are all about us and our specific role on the team. It’s easy to fall into selfishness. As followers of Jesus, we are led to do the opposite. We are called to value our teammates and competition above ourselves. Valuing our competition feels unnatural. As competitors, we want to win every game, meet and race against our rivals. There is nothing worse than losing a close, head to head match-up against a team or individual athlete who is rude, hateful or unjust. On the other hand, there is nothing sweeter than beating them!
As followers of Jesus we are called to value others above ourselves whether we win or lose. We are called to compete with humility and respect. Instead of writing off your teammates or competition, I challenge you to express gratitude for them. I swam some of my fastest times thanks to my fellow competitors pushing me to physical and mental places I had never been. Did I like the athletes all the time? No. But hard-working peers push us to be better and they deserve to be valued.
What if we thanked our competition after a game or race to show them we value their hard work? In humility, value others above yourselves. Whether we’re on a sports team or we’re working in an office, there will always be some form of opposition or competition heading our way. Training ourselves to walk in humility brings us closer to the Lord and refines us for our future.
- In what ways can we show humility to our competition?
- As athletes called to live a life that serves the Lord, how can we show our competition the Lord’s ways through our actions?
- Why is it important to compete in a respectable manner?
Micah 6:8; 1 Samuel 12:24; Ephesians 4:32