Kindness in Coaching

What role does kindness have in sports?  We’re more used to thinking in terms of toughness and gaining a competitive edge.  As we continue this series of devotions on the fruit of the Spirit from Galatians 5:22-23 – “But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control” – it might feel challenging …

Growing in Patience

Have you ever been tempted to pray something like this: “Lord, give me patience, and give it to me now”?  Coaching at any level often requires enormous amounts of patience.  Yet most of us would honestly admit being patient can be challenging. We’re continuing this series of devotions on the fruit of the Spirit (Galatians 5:22-23): “But the fruit of …

The Path to Peace

Most coaches probably wouldn’t describe the coaching profession as “peaceful.”  The description that comes to mind would more likely be along the lines of “stressful” or maybe even “relentless.”  So is it possible to experience genuine peace as a coach – even in the midst of the most intense times? We’re doing a series of devotions on the fruit of …

Coach with Joy

Dabo Swinney, the highly successful Clemson football coach, encourages his team to play with joy.  As you watch his players compete – and as you observe Coach Swinney on the sideline – you can sense their joy.  You can also see how this raises the level of their performance. In the last devotion, we observed how God in Galatians 5:22-23 …

Give Your Players Your All

Coach, it’s much more likely that your players will give you their all if they first know you’re giving them your all.  To give them your all, you must genuinely love them.  This isn’t merely a philosophy for effective coaching.  This is what God through the Bible – and God through his Son, Jesus Christ – makes very clear is …

Live with Substance

Coach, there can hardly be a greater honor than having your players say this about you: “I want my life to look like Coach’s life.”  For this to be true, you must be about more than achieving success in sports or looking a certain way or merely saying the right things.  As we considered in the last devotion, your leadership …

Lead with Substance

People long for leaders with substance – leaders who don’t merely have a title or hold a position but actually make a real difference.  Sadly, too many leaders settle for image management, empty promises, and choosing the path of least resistance.  Coach, as someone in a significant leadership position, how can you lead with genuine substance?  It starts with your …

Your Influence in Times Like This

Coach, the influence you have is likely more extensive than you realize.  What you say and do certainly impacts your players.  It can also affect fellow coaches, parents, and community members who know who you are because of your role as coach.  When something significant happens in the community, nation, or world, people take notice of how you respond. As …

Fighting Fatigue

If we’re honest, most of us are tired of dealing with the coronavirus pandemic.  We realize that our fatigue pales in comparison with that experienced by health care professionals and others who are battling COVID-19 on the front lines.  We’re deeply grateful for their heroic efforts.  Our weariness is different, but it’s still there as we wonder when life, including …

Coaching the Tongue

In the ESPN documentary series The Last Dance, we hear Chicago Bulls’ GM Jerry Krause claim, “There’s no backstabbing going on here.”  This was clearly not true.  Sadly, the problem of speaking harmfully about others behind their backs is not just something that happened with the 1997-98 Bulls.  It happens far more widely in sports and in life.  Perhaps it …