There are several vital ingredients that we will have to have in order to be Champions. The Patriot Way is a journey to becoming the best possible player and person that you can become. This journey is not an easy one and is filled with turns and pot holes along the way. Like any journey that is worthwhile, it takes time, faith, and high expectations.
The first component of the Patriot Way is hard work. There is no substitute for it. If we look for shortcuts, we will only give the minimum effort. Shortcuts do not fully develop our talents and lead to mediocrity. The Bible says “Good planning and hard work lead to prosperity, but hasty shortcuts lead to poverty.” Proverbs 21:5 The second aspect of The Patriot Way is enthusiasm. Nothing great was ever achieved without great enthusiasm. Enthusiasm enables us to push as hard as we need to push for as long as we need to push to achieve our best. If you are not fired up with enthusiasm, you will be fired with enthusiasm. Enthusiasm is contagious, but so is apathy.
In Romans 12:11, it says “Never be lazy in your work, but serve the Lord enthusiastically. “ In order to be enthusiastic you must truly enjoy what you are doing.
Our third aspect is teamwork. Our teammates make us better. It will be easier for us to reach our potential if we are working together. Teamwork comes from mutual esteem and devotion. It is like a good marriage. It is based on common concern for each other. Our teammates help complete us as we do them. As Christians we are not supposed to do it alone. We need each other.
The Bible tells us “a person standing alone can be attacked and defeated, but two can stand back to back and conquer. Three are even better, for a triple braided cord is not easily broken. “Ecclesiastes 4:12 with all of your teammates listen if you want to be heard. Be interested in finding the best way, not having it your way. Remember that all of us are smarter than one of us.”
One of the first things that Jesus did in His ministry was develop a team. That team of common individuals did some amazing things because they bonded together through Christ’s love. The message that they told the world about still affects it today.
We can become a part of that Team and carry that same life changing message that the Disciples did all of those years ago. It is an unchanging message. It is one that never gets old or loses its power. It’s one that has shaped my family, my past, and my future. It is the good news of Jesus Christ.
The fourth element of the Patriot Way is encouragement. We want to encourage each other to achieve our best. We know that Iron sharpens Iron and want to help our teammates be the best they can in order to make the team all it can be. We do not believe in the power of negative reinforcement or thinking. We want to be positive about who we are, where we are going, and how we are going to get there.
Confidence can be built on the back of encouragement. Our athletes will look at failure differently. If we go out every game, give our all, encourage each other and love each other to the best of our ability, then our play will transcend the score of the game and winning is not so important. We can play without the option of defeat every night we step onto the court or field to play.
The fifth element of the Patriot Way is Character. We want to have great teams of character. Character is who we really are when no one else is watching. People of great character always want to do what is right on and off the playing field. We do not want to have selective character and life up to our word on the court or field, but off it not live a life of integrity. We want to have a team full of character, NOT full of characters.
The sixth and final block of The Patriot way is we will LOVE each other. Love looks different in the team setting, but our teams will show love to each other by serving one another. During time outs our bench will serve the starters water and talk with them about what they are doing on the court or field and give advice to help them.
Our team’s most powerful motivator is love for one another. Our love will always do what is best for others and will empower us to face challenges and obstacles together. Love will be the motivation for all of our teams. We live in a world that is all about self. Our culture tells us to go after what is ours and only be worried about ourselves. The word that is the opposite of love is selfishness. Where selfishness begins is where our team’s growth ends. Almost every sin committed can be traced back to being selfish. I have never met a selfish person that is happy or an unselfish person that is unhappy.
The bottom line is this: you make decisions based on your love for others or your love for self. Love is never satisfied with self but is satisfied in the welfare of others. We choose to love our teammates and others. That will cause us to say no to your selfish desires and yes to what the team needs. That is putting the happiness of our team and others above ourselves. The truth is when we relinquish our rights for the sake of our team; we get a chance to lose yourself to the greater purpose of the team.
Love means thinking Christ first at all times. If we don’t think Christ first it destroys the Kingdom. We want our teams to be Kingdom Builders. Every wrong thing we do has a ripple effect. We must think about the big picture and know that all of our choices affect the big picture.
Love will keep our teams together. We want to be unified, together, many parts moving and thinking as one. The only way that can happen is love. Love will keep us constantly wanting to improve. We will live out KAIZEN. We want to improve every day for one another. The Patriot Way is all about the journey of becoming a Champion for Christ. It has nothing to do with winning games, because that is too small of a thing to be concerned with. Winning is a byproduct of what we will do.
May God Bless All of the Patriots in the world tonight.
Thank you Coach Meyer for being the rock of inspiration in making the Patriot Way. We will play this next season in honor of you!!!!
– Todd O’Neal