Today, I had an opportunity to talk with an old friend along with my husband. I met this person when my husband and I began courting and we consider them family.
They began sharing how our example really gave them hope in the midst of tragedy. They said, “you can tell that y’all have been practicing and that you have a relationship with the Divine Creator.” I can recall some of my response in that I was thankful that the relationship with the Lord was in place prior to the tragedy. You see, when you’re in the midst of the battle or fight, that’s not the time to go and find your armor. It’s in the consistent practice that you learn how to use your weapons so that when the challenge comes, you’re prepared. I’m reminded of the scripture where it says if you faint in the day of adversity, your strength is small (Prov. 24:10). Meaning, if you faint in the tough time, what you thought you had, you never really possessed.
Remember, Allen Iverson during his interview years ago and he was getting questioned about going to practice. He said, “we talkin’ bout practice?!” Many times, we want to talk about the defeats or victories on game day but everything starts with practice. Consistently practicing as if it’s game day is a lot easier said than done.
I can recall playing basketball at the University of Richmond and attending my first 5am practice at the Robbins Center. As a freshman, while stretching, I looked around the circle of teammates and thought to myself that this was the first practice among an innumerable amount that I’d be participating in over the course of the next four years.
Who wants to walk to the gym in the dark at 3:30am; get taped by the trainer so that you can be ready and dressed for the start of practice; take a quick shower after and head to class? What I didn’t know was that those routines were developing discipline in me that would affect every area of my life.
Polished Power Thought
You see, when you’re in the midst of the battle or fight, that’s not the time to go and find your armor.
Through consistent practice, transformation occurs. Change will come if you’re consistent and the only way for you to be tested is on game day. Yes. You can have scrimmages where in life you have those small challenges that come up and you have an opportunity to see where you are and how you respond. If you pay attention and make the necessary adjustments, you’ll begin to use those enhancements in practice ultimately making you a better player.
What am I saying? Daily, we have an opportunity to ‘practice’ communing and cultivating our relationship with the Holy Spirit. Those that are sons of God are led by the Holy Spirit and don’t fulfill the lusts of the flesh. Daily, we have an opportunity to partake and operate in the fruit of the Holy Spirit (Gal. 5:22-23). This kind of fruit can only be produced by His Spirit because you yield to the practice and decide to obey through your consistent application.
Practice; daily application of His word makes us better. Remember when Jesus told the disciples to be of good cheer because He had already overcome the world. One translation says that He deprived the world of its power to hurt you. You’ll never know those things unless you come to practice (church) to receive the instructions, strategies within the playbook (Bible) so that you’ll know how to navigate in this world.
Polished Power Thought
Through consistent practice, transformation occurs.
There’s so much more for us to grow in and learn in our relationship with the Lord and the fellowship of the Holy Spirit, and it will only come by practice. I’m reminded of Paul when he said to repeat certain things was not grievous to him because he knew that the words he was giving would only make those people around him better.
Pay attention to the people God puts in your life. When you yield to the word that comes from those that God assigns to you, you’re training your spirit to receive from the Holy Spirit for yourself. Remember Samuel, he was able to discern the voice of the Lord first through his submission and obedience to Eli.
Position yourself to receive and be open to apply what you learn so that you will be a credible witness, an example fit to be used for His glory on game day! Consistent practice makes you better!
“I have told you these things, so that in Me you may have [perfect] peace and confidence. In the world you have tribulation and trials and distress and frustration; but be of good cheer [take courage; be confident, certain, undaunted]! For I have overcome the world. [I have deprived it of power to harm you and have conquered it for you.]” John 16:33 (AMPC)