Wednesday, February 13, 2008


DAY 16 Winning Edge Devotions

EPH. 4: 31 Let all bitterness and wrath and anger and clamor and slander be put away from you, along with all malice. 32 Be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, as God in Christ forgave you.

Football is never about perfection. If you go back and analyze each play of each game, you will see all kinds of missed assignments and blown coverages. It is also impossible to go through a season without some sort in personal conflicts.

These can be as shallow as simple soldier’s spats in practice or as complex as years of neglect or bullying. Coaches are not immune from the issues. Given time and human nature, all relationships can deteriorate into fragile and fractured pieces.

A team that holds onto anger, bitterness, or slander will crumble under pressure. I have seen good football teams torn apart by selfishness and bitterness. I have also seen good coaching staffs crumble under the weight of broken friendships and hurt feelings.

Another word that stands out in the above passage is clamor. I think of clamor as that underground talk that can rob a coach or team of their unity. It is the behind the scene doubting and gossip that undermines the good spirit of a team.

In the end, people who hold onto slander, wrath, bitterness, anger, and clamor are themselves destroyed. This is the primary reason that the Bible asks us to put it away. Don’t keep hating because it will poison you in the end.

How do we do this? It is really simple. When we truly understand how much God has forgiven us in Christ, there is no injury that we have suffered that compares. If God has put it away in His thoughts of us- we ought to easily put it away in regard to others.

If we can’t do this, then we really do not know the magnitude of Christ’s great forgiveness. As God forgives us, we forgive others.

Mistakes are inevitable; I hope forgiveness is also inevitable. I want my team to go back to the locker room and get it right. I want a team that is kind and forgiving to one another. Is there a relationship in your life in disrepair? Do the right thing and make it right. Forgive the offender, even if they have not asked. Ultimately, the forgiveness will only restore you.

Lord, help me to see Your great forgiveness and let it compel me to forgive others. Help me to see that kindness and forgiveness actually heals my heart. Thank you for loving me and forgiving me. I ask You to forgive those that are grieving me. I will make an effort to begin forgiving them. I know this is the only path to peace.

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