How Can an Athlete Cultivate Humility?

One way we as athletes can glorify God in our play is by cultivating humility. In Don't Waste Your Sports, C. J. Mahaney points out this astonishing truth: Humility gets God's attention (see Isaiah 66:2).

Here's a profile of the humble athlete:

  • A humble athlete recognizes his limitations. We all come with divinely imposed limitations—limitations meant to humble us.

  • The humble athlete welcomes critique and correction from coaches and teammates. If we’re humble, we realize that we have weaknesses, so we welcome correction. If we’re humble, we know we need to improve, so we want others to show us where and how.

  • The humble athlete acknowledges the contribution of others. No athlete accomplishes anything alone.

  • The humble athlete is gracious in defeat and modest in victory. When the humble athlete loses, he recognizes that his opponents played better, and he sincerely congratulates them on their win. And when the humble athlete wins, there are no excessive celebrations, no inappropriate victory dances. He realizes that victory is a gift from God and is an opportunity to draw attention to God, not himself.

  • The humble athlete honors his coach. He doesn't rip the coach in private, he doesn't slouch when on the bench, he expresses gratitude and accepts the role the coach chooses for him.

  • The humble athlete respects the officials. He doesn’t protest a call—even if it was inaccurate.

  • The humble athlete gives glory for all his athletic accomplishment to God. He knows that all of his athletic skill is ultimately a gift from God.

Learn more about Don't Waste Your Sports.

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