I think it was around this time last year that I was watching the Usain Bolt documentary on Netflix. He was running laps during a training session with his coach but he kept getting a lot of things wrong and so the coach would stop him and correct him each time. I remember being amazed that the fastest man in the world still needed correction and training. I guess in my head I thought after breaking world records he would be perfect at it.
After the documentary, I started reflecting and I realized that no matter how great we are, we never truly attain and no matter what we achieve, we still need to keep training to maintain it. But as I was meditating on that, my thoughts drifted to the coach and I could hear God whisper to my spirit: “notice how the coach never got mad or walked away from him no matter how many times he messed up?”
I thought,”Huh? Why would he do that?”
And then he said: “So why do you think that I will? No matter how many times you may mess up and need correction, I’m here to coach you to victory.”
I was floored. Because up until that point I didn’t realize I truly believed that if I didn’t get this “Christianity thing” right, God would eventually be fed up with me and move on to someone else. I kept thinking I had to prove to God that I was good enough, that I was worthy of the call on my life. And I didn’t even realize how the weight of that belief was hindering my relationship with him. In my mind, though he was a loving God, he was also a punitive God and so I had to get my act together if he was ever going to bless me. So whenever I did mess up, often times I would hide or go a day or so without praying out of shame. Not only that, but because I viewed him as an authoritative God there was no real intimacy. Until the Spirit revealed it to me, I didn’t even realize how deeply I held it to be true.
Well thank God for Grace! And thank God for the Holy Spirit who leads us and guides us into truth!
Needless to say, that prayer session that night ended in much tears. But from that day on I firmly understood his thoughts towards me – plans to prosper me, not harm me, and plans to give me a hope and a future . With God on my side coaching me to victory, how could I fail? With God on my side, what could stand against me and better yet, what could separate me from his love?
That revelation moved me from religion to relationship. The fire and brimstone raining God of the Universe, seated on his throne in some faraway sphere in the skies, stepped down from the heavens and became my friend.
It changed everything but, most importantly, it changed the way I view challenges and obstacles that come my way. If God is coaching me to victory then this “thing” is not here to harm me or derail me, and with God as my coach, I can always get over or get through and if I in myself am not able, crumbling mountains is his specialty (and it is… believe me).
It’s how I bounce back from disappointment, it’s how I stay agile and adaptable, by remembering that God is coaching me to victory and if I’m not there yet he is not finished. Until then, everything is just training.