Tuesday, October 10, 2006

CONFIDENCE ON THE COURT

blondinArticle from Christ Commission Fellowship

Who is the most confident player you know? Many of us know about Michael Jordan and Kobe Bryant, but in the 80’s, an incredible player named Larry Bird from a small town in Indiana overcame the odds to become one of the greatest players in the NBA ever. Magic Johnson called him “the only player I really fear.” He was a white player who dominated the game with his confident and almost even cocky attitude. During down the wire games, he always wanted the ball in his hands for the game winning shot, and he would even describe to the player guarding him how he would score over him and actually do it! He also won the first three All-star 3 point shoot out and was known to have commented about his opponents; “I don’t know why they bother showing up, I’m going to win this contest anyway.”

How important do you think confidence is for a player?

What are the consequences of not having confidence when you are playing the game? (Is it enjoyable? Are you able to perform to your fullest potential?)

How do you develop confidence as a player?

Confidence plays a key role in basketball and sports in general. It is an element that is important in every facet of the game. For example, can your teammates have confidence in you? If they lose their man in a pick and roll, can they have confidence that you will switch for them? Can they trust you that you will pass the ball if they are open and in better scoring position? How about your coach, can they have confidence that you will do your best with what is expected of you when he puts you in the game?

Just as confidence plays a major role in your excellence as a player and team, it is also vital in your relationship with God. If you don’t have confidence in your relationship with God and know that He fully loves and accepts you as you are, you wont be able to live the abundant Christian life. Last week, we talked about the 4 Quarters of Life.

Have you made that decision to sign the contract and be part of God’s winning team? If you’ve done that, then you can be confident that when your time is up and final buzzer of your life sounds, you will spend eternity with God in heaven!

Let me ask you, what should be the basis of our confidence? Is it our good works? Most of us think that at the end of our life, if our good works outweigh our bad works, then God will let us into heaven. If the opposite is true then we will go to Hell. right? The Bible never says anything like this! Because our good works do not deserve a reward, they are our OBLIGATION! If a player attends practice for his team, does the coach pay him every time he attends practice? Does he pay for his dinner because he dives for the loose ball? No, that’s his job!

In the same way, confidence of our eternal destiny should not depend on our good works, because that is not the basis of our security. In fact, the bible says that “All our righteous acts are like filthy rags.”(Isaiah 64:6). It further declares what should be the basis of our forgiveness. Ephesians 2:8-9 declares, “For it is by GRACE you have been saved through faith, and this not from yourselves. It is a gift of God, not as a result of works so that no one can boast.” Grace literally means undeserved gift or unmerited favor. It is because of God’s mercy and love that He sent His Son, Jesus Christ to die on the cross in our place.

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