My hope this season is that you find it in your soul to be the person you were called to be…that generosity and unconditional love would become common habits in your life. I’ve traveled all over the world the last 30 something years and I run into people all over looking to me to change their circumstance in life. My goal is not create a giant fan base and to increase product sales. I am not the answer to all you challenges in life. My goal is simple…to see you step into the life you were called to live.
It’s interesting when I think about a coach’s job. Coaches don’t make touchdowns, slam dunks or home runs. The coach’s priority is to get the players to trust themselves and each other to be the best player possible…to believe in the team. The other day I drove by a basketball court in my old neighborhood. I saw Kobe jerseys, Iverson jerseys, and even an old Scottie Pippen jersey. But, not one Phil Jackson suit/shirt/tie. Phil Jackson understood that it was not his job to be the superstar…it was his job to get the immature kid with his head in the stars to buckle down, learn discipline and teamwork…and then, eventually, inevitably become a superstar.
“Despite their tremendous talent, (NBA players) are still, by and large, young adults, seeking validation from an authority figure, and there is no greater authority figure on a team than the coach. Needless to say, in today’s warped, self-indulgent climate, too many players couldn’t care less about appeasing the coach.” – Phil Jackson (Retired NBA Coach)
Most people want to make a difference. Most people want to help to make things better. Most people would like to find a way to change the world. But we don’t always know where to start. Start by focusing on the basics. The basics in this life are simple…love God, love people. These two work hand in hand. You can’t love God without loving people and vise versa. Connect and listen to the coach of Abraham, Isaac, Jacob. Embrace His generosity and compassion and go and do likewise.
I know that sometimes when we speak of loving our neighbors, we think of the nice ones first. We think of the cute children and nice elderly woman knitting scarves. However, thinking beyond the easy and into the emotionally difficult is the difference between high school ball and the major leagues. Being generous to those who least deserve it and to those who may not even always say thank you are sometimes the most difficult situations in life. However, is this not the same compassion shown us.
This Christmas season, remember…it’s not about you. It’s not about the new iPad, or even the Christmas ham. It’s about remembering God’s love for us and the challenge to reciprocate that love to each person we come in contact with.
Now go and change the world. Be the champion you were called to be. Embrace the love of God and through that love, embrace those around you. I believe in you.