Monday, May 5, 2014

May 5, 2014 - Playing For The Coach!

As the NBA season winds down we are at the typical point of the turning of the coaching carousel… Even winning teams are considering firing coaches with the thought that it will get them to the next round next year… It is truly funny to me as a former coach because it really places way too much credit/blame on the coach.

Simply put it is a giant leap / assumption that players are actually doing on the court what their coach designed in the huddle or prepared them for in practice. I realize some will argue that the coach’s responsibility is to get the players to do that; yet there is a reason that even coaches stand on sidelines scratching their heads and asking what players were thinking…

At any given time things can be going great and a player goes brain-dead and messes it all up; then when one stupid mistake takes place it seems to snowball with multiple players… and the blame then shifts to the coach.

I remember years ago in a game where our team was beating a much more talented and higher ranked team. They were also a much more athletic and much bigger team. There was no reason that we should be winning apart from a great game plan (that was mostly orchestrated by my assistant coach Rick Lewis.) Well into the 3rd quarter we carried a lead and then it happened; one kid decided to go solo on his plan instead of sticking to the game plan. In a few minutes time we fell behind and ended up losing the game by the same deficit we ended that 3rd quarter in…

All of this reminiscing to simply state: you can’t always judge a coach by what you see taking place on the floor. And the same is true in life… we cannot always judge God by what His players are doing “on the court.”

Over all of my years of ministry I have not met people that were anti-God or anti-Jesus; they may have discounted His existence, but had not rejected the true character of God. They have been more anti-Christian than anti-Jesus. What had happened is people had looked at “the game” and “the players” and drew conclusions about “the Coach.”

But the reality is that, even though unfair, a coach is judged by his players. There are questions swirling about the coach of the Golden State Warriors (Mark Jackson) and his job security. It is believed that team leaders are considering firing him in spite of continued improvement each year under his watch. Their star player (Steph Curry) said this: "I love Coach more than anybody. For him to be in a position where his job is under scrutiny and under questions is totally unfair."

We need to understand as believers that we represent Christ in all we do… we affect His reputation… we have a responsibility as His ambassadors! (2 Cor 5:20) Years ago the group NewSong had a song that stated “We Wear His Name”: do you get that? The name on the front of our jersey is Jesus. We represent Him!

Matthew 5: 14 “You are the light of the world. A city that is set on a hill cannot be hidden. 15 Nor do they light a lamp and put it under a basket, but on a lampstand, and it gives light to all who are in the house. 16 Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works and glorify your Father in heaven.

I’ll adapt Seth Curry’s quote for the Christian’s responsibility before God: "I love Coach more than anybody. For him to be in a position where his name is under scrutiny and under questions is totally unfair."

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