Good day!!  Welcome back to the GSM blog. My name is Dave Good and it is my honor to spend the next few minutes with you. I pray this blog is a blessing to you and brings you closer to God.  

Today, I want to speak to you about practice Most of you know that I am a huge sports fan. Over the years I have played and watched just about every sport there is. Growing up we used to play football in the street, pick up basketball, hockey in the school yard, and baseball in the empty field down the street. Sports allowed me to channel my competitive side and more importantly burn off some of my energy.

Sports have been such a blessing to me over the years. As I grow older the sports have changed a bit but they are still a part of my life. Gone are the days of football and basketball but I still enjoy biking, golf and going to the gym. I will be completely honest with you, I was never great at any sport but I was able to utilize my talents enough to not make a fool of myself. I was never the fastest guy or the strongest but I could understand the game and use my knowledge to overcome those shortcomings. This sounds like the movie, “Rudy.” If you haven’t watched that movie I encourage you to view it—you won’t be disappointed.

Through all my years of sports participation the one thing I’ve learned is that practice is essential to improvement. Any time you join a team, I don’t care what sport it is, the season always starts with a playbook and practice. In football, the playbook diagrams all the plays the offense or defense runs. In basketball the coach utilizes a magnetic board to demonstrate the player movements. In golf, the players carry around a book which contains yardages and club selections from the practice rounds. Every sport has some sort of playbook to help them be the best they can be and impart knowledge to the players.

Our life has a playbook too. It’s called God’s Word or the Bible. Reading your Bible will provide you with God’s playbook for our life. The Bible provides instructions, plays, and rules we need to play the game of life. I know, you are probably thinking that life is not a sport but I beg to disagree. The life we face has everything football, baseball, basketball, or any other sport would include. The are rules, momentum swings, adversities, competitiveness, and drama, all within one game.

The way we get better at life, and the ability to overcome and endure the adversity that is thrown our way, is to spend time practicing. Life practice involves reading our Bible each and every day. Just like an athlete trying to improve and make the team, understanding the Bible and spending time reading it is just like practice. The more you practice the better you get.

You can ask any professional athlete and they will tell you they have spent hundreds, if not thousands, of hours practicing and most of the time they are doing it by themselves. Whether it’s spending the time at the gym or running laps to improve their endurance, most of the time no one is around or even knows about the effort they are putting in. The same can be said about our walk with Jesus, our prayer time, and our Bible study. The Gospel of Matthew tells us in Matthew 6:6, “But when you pray, go into your room, close the door and pray to your Father, who is unseen. Then your Father, who sees what is done in secret, will reward you.”

The Word tells us that we should find a secret place to practice with our Bible. I can honestly tell you I’ve spent many , many hours in His Word. I love reading what God has to tell us. I love trying to understand His commands and rules. I love digesting the plays and directions he has written out for us. The Bible has taught me so much on how to play the game called life and not only endure it but to compete at a very high level.

Just like a professional athlete we never master the game. Sure, we will have days where we feel victorious or strong and there will be days when we feel defeated and worn out. The good news is that our practice and devotion to God’s word will give us the skills needed to stay in the game and fight to the end. The best part is that not only will will be more prepared but God will play the game with us.

“The Lord himself goes before you and will be with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged.”Deuteronomy 31:8

The truth is that we have the greatest teammate of all. The G.O.A.T. as they say playing along with us. The Lord, himself will coach us , instruct us, and participate along side of us each and every day.

Friends, I hope this analogy from the world of sports and the game of life is helpful. I cannot stress enough how important it is to read your Bible. We need to put in the work on a daily basis to understand His Word. And, if you do just that, I promise you that the practice will pay off and you will be equipped with all the skills necessary to play the game of life at a very high level.

God bless you and I look forward to spending more time with you next week.

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