Every step you take

"Each success on the Field on a Saturday is the result of 1000 unseen mornings"  Ken Mannie, Strength Coach, Michigan State University

Good football coaches recognize that in order to perform well in game conditions, you need more than desire, determination, and talent.  Performance in the game is the result of hard work and discipline that comes from 1000s of hours on practice fields, weight rooms, and classrooms that is largely unseen by the thousands who cheer them on.

What an incredible metaphor for our own success.  It is the small decisions, relentlessly focused on the right things, that forms our responses in the moments of true opportunity. 

Just as an athlete must condition his body and mind to achieve his or her desired goal, so we must be intentional about developing our skills and our character for success.

About once a month, I will meet a young man in my medical office who tells me he desires to play professional sports.  Last month,  16 yr old Derek (name has been changed to protect the innocent) shared with me that he desired to play in the NBA one day.  He was over 6'5" and stated that he has been able to dunk since 8th grade.  As impressive as that is, and his stature, Derek wasnt even on his school basketball team.  Derek did not play basketball daily nor did he attend school regularly.  You and I know that Derek, despite his desire and his potential, has virtually no chance of actually playing in the NBA.

Its the little things done rightly, persistently, and consistently that builds our skill and character.  These are decisions that you and I make everyday.  If I want to lose weight, then every bite I take makes a difference. The scale does not measure my desire or my potential to lose weight, but is a reflection of 1000s of choices to reduce calories and to exercise.

My first Kenpo instructor used to constantly tell us "You will fight the way you train".  He was saying that the degree of effort, discipline, and devotion in the dojo will come out naturally if we had to defend ourselves.  We can not turn on a button that will help me to outperform my training.  No, our training is our reality.

A recent study demonstrated that 90% of lottery winners who won over 5 million have nothing to show for it within a decade of winning.  Yet, millionaires who earned their money often have a legacy of wealth for generations.  The difference is based upon the discipline required in the latter group who made daily decisions to work hard, invest, sacrifice, and see the end from the beginning. 

I am using sports and business metaphors to encourage you to think about your goals and to know that success is not a matter of getting the "one big break" but of 1000's of unseen disciplines and sacrifices that you have done to perform as the opportunity arises.

It has been said that every system is uniquely structured to deliver the results that it gives.  That means that we develop systems to support our current reality and that this reality will remain in place until you change your system. We change our systems not through declarations and proclamations of intent, but through changing the disciplines of our lives to insure that we are consistent in our choices, persistent in our habits, and virtuous in our character.

Think about your goals and callings today.  Visualize success.  Now consider what are the daily disciplines required to reach it.  The victory will be earned in 1000's unseen moments.

May God bless you,


Pastor M Traylor