"I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me." Philippians 4:13
Did you know there's a champion inside of you? Well, there is! And over the past year we've devoted our 'Championship Series' of blog posts to unleashing that immeasurable, hidden potential residing inside of you.
Today's final topic is one of the critical keys to releasing that dormant potential. It is a small thing that makes a huge difference. It is what gives a champion a decided advantage over the competition. It is a winning attitude!
It's so important for you to see yourself as the winner that you truly are. (See Jeremiah 29:11.) You have favor! However, it's up to you to receive it, in order to really begin to experience your true, full potential.
If you don't see yourself as a winner, you can't expect to perform as a winner, let alone perform as a champion. Champions see themselves as winners. They always expect to win. Champions visualize the victory long before it happens. Their attitude (and preparation) give them a supreme confidence that they can't lose. They believe it before they see it. (See 2 Corinthians 5:7.)
NFL Hall of Famer, Joe Namath, told the world his 18-point underdog, New York Jets football team would win Super Bowl III. And they did! In January 1969, the Jets won a stunning 16-7 victory over the Baltimore Colts! A winning attitude is indispensable for a champion.
There are many who possess the potential, the capabilities to win. But at the end of the day, only one will take home that gold medal. And that will be the person with the strongest mindset, the greatest desire and confidence to prevail, the one with the winning attitude.
Roger Bannister broke one of sports' seemingly impossible barriers when he ran the mile in under 4 minutes in 1954. He had put in months of excruciating physical practice. However, in order to shatter the 4 minute barrier Bannister had to visualize himself doing so. So, he imagined his entire run, every stride, every turn, every second from start to the finish. And on May 6, 1954 at Iffley Road Track in Oxford, U.K., Roger Bannister ran the mile in 3 min. 59.4 sec., shattering the previous record! He had that indispensable, championship confidence that he could do it. He had a winning attitude!
Legendary NBA Champion, Michael Jordan, stated that the ability to achieve starts in your mind. It was a fact that he learned at an early age. Your thinking, your attitude can restrain you, or propel you forward. People can sense and feel your attitude. If you don't like someone, it's virtually impossible to hide it. People pick up on the vibes! Champions know that if you don't have confidence in yourself, the world will know, and, more importantly, you won't be able to achieve your dreams.
Self-confidence is possibly the primary mental skill that championship athletes possess. It is a very strong belief in their ability to perform well at a high level. They see themselves as winners. Consequently, champions think, act and behave in very confident ways. Don't hate on the swag because they exude an energy of success, an expectancy that, yes, they will win! Champions plan to win, prepare to win, and, definitely, anticipate winning without a doubt. And more often than not, they are victorious!
Champions have an adaptive, positive, winning attitude. This attitude, associated with high achievement and success, is characterized by 1) setting high standards; 2) being well organized; 3) liking recognition; 4) low concern regarding mistakes; and 5) confidence in their ability to perform. It's an attitude that allows them to remain positive in the face of difficulties, and to rebound quickly when failures are experienced. It triggers enthusiasm, enhances creativity, and causes positive things to happen!
When they're competing, champions seem to be able to shift into another gear, to reach down and tap into a hidden reserve tank of energy that many find truly astonishing, especially their competitors! The Apostle Paul states, "I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me." (Philippians 4:13) It is this connection with Christ, Paul tells us, that strengthens us by the power of His might and grace! We are empowered to overcome any barrier, and to perform extraordinarily, whatever task or burden we might face; not through our strength, but through His! Paul, truly, had a winning attitude!
So, we have come full circle, from the first post of our 'Championship Series'! We began twelve months ago with the Apostle Paul's admonition, "Don't you realize that in a race everyone runs, but only one person gets the prize? So, run to win." 1 Corinthians 9:24.
The race, of which Paul speaks, is an allusion to the Grecian, triennial Isthmian games, with which the Corinthians were well acquainted. These athletic games would be like the Olympic Games which we know today. The prize was a crown, fashioned of branches and leaves, which was held by the president, or judge, of the games and was awarded to the winner of the race. So, what is the moral of the story?
The race track is this world, or present life. The runners are Christians running the race of this life. The president, the Righteous Judge, is Jesus Christ, the forerunner, who has already, triumphantly, completed the course, and sits on a throne holding the crown. The crown is eternal life. The act of running is forward motion: the saints seeking to know the LORD; striving in holiness, faithfulness, service, and truth. While running the racers strive to keep their focus on the mark, Jesus Christ, the Righteous Judge. (Remember what happened to Lot's wife when she looked back?)
The end of the running is to obtain the prize, the incorruptible crown of eternal life. The runners strive to see who can do the most service for Jesus Christ; who can bring Him the most glory. This is what the race is all about.
As we persevere in running the race of this life, in the path of duty and obedience, we eagerly look forward, at the end, to stretching forth our hands and receiving the crown of eternal life! Champions, run your race the very best that you can. Run with an attitude - a winning attitude! Yes, run, indeed, to win!
Run the good race, fight the good fight, and lay hold on eternal life! 1 Timothy 6:12
You are a champion in Christ Jesus!
Until next time,
Hi! I'm Kenneth Lillard, author, ordained minister, and motivational speaker. This blog is an expression of some of my thoughts and opinions. I'm glad you stopped by. Hope you'll share some of your comments while you're here. Be Blessed!