Keep Your Head Up

One of the first life lessons we learn in sports is to “Keep your head up.” When we first fail in that attempt, practice, or game and do not think we measure up. We have all been there… Head down, looking at our feet and ground…. Totally lost in our thoughts and not knowing what to do next. Then we hear that voice… from a coach, parent, or teammate that says, “Keep your head up, to believe in yourself and you will get better.” Team sports maybe the best tool to practice life, and this lesson is critical. As you get older you discover that these moments are not limited to our youth. You will have many “Keep your head up” times that you will need hope in the next try, believe that you can get better, and know that your worth is not found in failure. The dopamine rush of success can mask our improvement areas; but our identity is challenged most in failure and defeat. Failure will force you to evaluate every part of your being….

So this brings the question…. What makes you “Keep your head up?” I was reading Romans Chapter 10 and came across the verse; “How beautiful are the feet of those who bring good news!” My mind immediately began to question why Paul used the word “feet.” Why didn’t he say face, smile, or something else? Because when someone is looking at the ground…. The only thing they can see is someone else’s feet. The imagery is a person with his head down and who raises it when he hears the voice. So what makes us raise our head? The Good News…. The Truth… How beautiful are the feet of those that tell us the truth? This tell me that our decision to raise our head, depends on what voice we listen to… The voice can be external or internal; because we talk to ourselves more than anyone else. In these moments, you need a voice of encouragement in 3 main areas:

  1. Character: Is not determined by our condition or circumstance. The world is hard and we all want to feel relevant… Success makes us feel like we belong and are important. However, successful people understand that results drive improvements and do not define importance or inferiority. Life is not a singular event, and your character is built by what you do daily. The truth… the good news… is that you are a masterpiece… “For we are God’s handiwork, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do.” -Ephesians 2:10… Keep Your Head Up…
  2. Confidence: Failure is not final, and wants to send the message that you are unworthy. That you do not measure up and will never measure up… There is a finality to winning and losing, but there is not to pride, effort and competing. With the best teams I have coached, I have been able to say, “I do not know if we will win or lose. But I know for a fact, that we will compete our tails off.” There is great victory in knowing that you are an ultimate life competitor. Our confidence is found in our measurement of success, and in knowing our true identity. Psalm 139:14 says, “I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well.Keep Your Head Up
  3. Conviction: We are not only in a mental battle, but also in a spiritual one. Failure will make you question what you are doing, if you should continue, and if you should quit. The fastest way to destroy your impact is for you to walk away. The best way for you to stop improving, is to stop competing. To draw yourself away from what has been on your heart… People give up because they are seeking peace away from their pain. However they are not rewarded with peace, but with the pain of regret. Always remember that people remember your name before they remember a score. People do not always admire winners, but they always admire those that keep battling. God does not put something on your heart for no reason…. Keep battling and striving to be the best version of yourself. We cannot be the best, until we learn how to be our best. Hebrews 11:1 says, “Now faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen.Keep Your Head Up

Remember… What brings our head up depends on what voice we listen to…

“The word in near you…. For it is with your heart that you believe and are justified, and it is with your mouth that you profess your faith and are saved. Anyone who believes in him will never be put to shame.” Romans 10: 8-10

One thought on “Keep Your Head Up

  1. This is so powerful. I gonna choose to keep my head up , on the promises of God! Winning is not final and failing is not fatal.
    Romans 5:3-4, talks about , as we joy in our trials, we learn perseverance , then character, and hope. Hope comes from The Holy Spirit!
    What a great lesson Coach Winegarden!


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