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The Best Head Coach

Game Plan for Life Joe Gibbs Chalk Talks

Before a word is on my tongue you, Lord, know it completely. — Psalm 139:4

As each NFL season comes to a close, a ritual takes place on the first Monday after the last regular-season game. The sports media call it “Black Monday,” when general managers and team owners take stock of how well their team did that year — what went right and what went wrong. Then they look at their head coach, evaluating whether or not he is capable of helping the team perform at a high level next year. A lot of coaching changes take place on Black Monday. The sports media love to cover the firing and hiring — the “coaching carousel” as they sometimes call it. Being an NFL head coach is not for the faint of heart nor for those seeking job security.

Yet although being a head coach is tough, there is no question he is arguably the most influential factor on any team. He sets the direction, and the coaching staff supports his decisions. The players, from the future Hall of Fame veteran to the greenest rookie, look to him for leadership. They need to have confidence in his skills as a leader and coach. They also need to know that he cares about them and that his job is to help them become the best players they can be. No matter how great the player may be, he will not win a game on his own skills alone. He will win the game by playing on a team with talent that is coached and organized for success.

In the game of life, God — our head coach — is the single most important factor in winning. As the great Christian writer A. W. Tozer noted, “What comes into our minds when we think about God is the most important thing about us.”

Asking Christ to be my Lord and Savior, submitting to God as my head coach, is the most important decision I’ve ever made, and it has impacted every area of my life — from how I treat my wife and sons to how I spend my money to how I interact with the people with whom I work. Whether you spend your life trying to collect wealth and fame for yourself or loving others and storing up treasures in heaven depends almost entirely upon how you view God.

And yet so many have not made that connection. Frequently someone will say to me, “Joe, if I had proof that God really did exist, I would believe.” To answer this I share four commonsense observations I’ve made:

  • First, I’ve witnessed profound changes in other people’s lives that are just short of miraculous. I’ve seen guys completely turn their lives around.
  • Second, I believe the complexity of the universe and creation speaks to the existence of God.
  • Third, the Bible itself is amazing; though people have tried to debunk it throughout history, centuries later it is more relevant than ever with a clear, consistent message and more historical evidence authenticating it every year.
  • Last, I talk about the changes that came about in my own life.

Have you made God your Head Coach yet? When you think of Him, what comes into your mind? Do you realize that He loves you and cares about the struggles you are facing today and that He wants to be in a relationship with you . . . to be the Head Coach in your life? From the very first pages of the Bible, we learn that we are created in the image of God (Genesis 1:27). The rest of the Bible is about His unyielding efforts to be in relationship with fallen mankind. He knows our very thoughts (Psalm 139:4). Why wouldn’t we want Him to lead us?

Prayer for Today

Heavenly Father, thank You for being the Coach of my life, always wanting what is best for me. Please help me to know You more intimately. Help me learn to turn to You with all of my struggles, disappointments, and failures. Help me also to learn to talk to You through my prayers and praise You in the best of times. Amen.

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Your Turn

We would love to hear your answers to the questions Joe Gibbs asked above. Share your thoughts in our comments section below. ~ Devotionals Daily