Every man wants to be a champion…at something. Whether it’s in athletics, marriage, parenting, at work, in business, in ministry, or whatever he deems is worthy of his blood, sweat, and tears.
That’s why men are so obsessed with sports; because we have an insatiable appetite to win at almost everything. And if we can’t win at something, we at least want to be associated with someone who is a winner.
Take football, for instance. A grown man – present company included – who’s long past his “glory days” on the gridiron, will buy and wear the jersey of his favorite player, on his favorite team, just to satisfy his secret desire to win. And when his team wins, even though he never made it onto the field, he uses phrases and pronouns like “We won,” “We’re going undefeated this year,” “We’re going to the Super Bowl,” or “We’re building a dynasty.”
Even if our team traditionally loses more often than they win (sorry Cleveland Browns fans), we’ll still wear the jersey of the “best player” on the team, because we so desperately want to be associated with that player’s greatness. Think about it, who wants to wear the jersey of the punter or placekicker other than his mom, wife, and children?
But instead of trying to associate ourselves with a champion, maybe we should be asking ourselves, “What does it really take to become one?” Because the truth is, God created us to BE champions. He built us to win, and purposed us to reign, rule and have dominion. He expects us to BE champions, not just to sit in the stands and stand on the sidelines, cheering for those who are trying to be.
Beyond the obvious individual attributes of a champion – like great work ethic, self-discipline, self-confidence, commitment, and an unshakable will to win – every real champion knows there are some not-so-obvious things he needs to have in place if he ever expects to achieve true greatness. Specifically speaking, there are 5 particular things every godly man needs in order to succeed as a champion.
1. Every man needs a SAVIOR who will heal him and restore him
Your relationship with God is the most important relationship you’ll ever have in your life (Matt 22:36). And the reason why is because it will influence and determine the quality of your relationship with others, including your wife, children, friends, colleagues, employees, etc. No real championship can be won outside of a relationship with Jesus Christ because without Him, we can do nothing (John 15:5,6). But if you accept Jesus Christ as your Savior, you’re guaranteed the victory before you even step a foot on the field. Every champion needs a Savior.
2. Every man needs a TEAM who will walk with him and go to war for him
You’re only as strong as your team. Think about it. Regardless of how strong you are, another man will always be stronger than you if he has more “spotters” than you. One of you will never be better than all of us, so that means your success as a champion is directly related to the quality and strength of your team. It doesn’t matter how great LeBron James is, even five average high school players will defeat him if he chooses to play against them by himself. Every champion needs the right team (Gal 6:2,3).
3. Every man needs TEAMMATES who will stand beside him and challenge him
If a man is only as strong as his team, then he’s only as confident as the teammates who are playing beside him. I’m talking about that teammate you know you can trust and depend on, no matter what happens. That teammate who will not quit on you, who will believe in you, sacrifice for you, and – if necessary – get in your face and confront you. Michael Jordan needed Scottie Pippen; LeBron James needed Kyrie Irving; Derek Jeter needed Mariano Rivera; and Tom Brady needed reliable wide receivers. Every champion needs some foxhole brothers as his teammates. (Prov. 27:17).
4. Every man needs a COACH who will teach him and train him
Have you ever seen an Olympic Champion win a gold medal without a coach? No champion, I repeat, no man has ever become a champion without a good coach. However, many men try to win in life without one. A coach is that man or mentor who’s wiser and more experienced than you are. He helps you clearly define your goals, then he patiently teaches, trains, and prepares you to achieve them. Think about it: Where would the New England Patriots be without Bill Belichick or the University of Alabama be without Nick Saban? No man can expect to be a champion at anything without a qualified coach (Prov. 28:26).
5. Every man needs a COUNSELOR who will help lead him and guide him
A counselor is something every man needs, but no man wants until it’s too late. Our spiritual counselor is the Holy Spirit, who leads and guides us in all truth. But we also need professional counselors to help us see our blind spots, so we can understand why we think and respond the way we do.
If every champion was totally honest, almost all of them would confess that they’ve spoken to, been advised, or consulted with a sports psychologist. Why? Because when you compete at the highest levels of anything, including sports, you’ll find that only 10% of it is physical (based on talent and ability), but 90% of it is mental. Mental toughness will always trump physical strength. Just ask Michael Jordan. Every champion needs a professional counselor (Prov. 11:14).
So if you truly desire to be a Champion for Christ in all areas of your life, take five minutes to take our Real Man Spiritual Check Up – to assess how strong you are each of these five critical areas manhood. To get the exam, just click here for the Real Man Spiritual Check Up.
Just score yourself at the end of the Check Up to find out your Championship status.