Spring 2021 Magazine

OneCoach: Benefits of taking risks

“Salvation is found in no one else, for there is no other name under heaven given to men by which we must be saved. When they saw the courage of Peter and John and realized that they were unschooled, ordinary men, they were astonished and they took note that these men had been with Jesus.”

Acts 4:12-14

I remember when I was coaching high school basketball, there was always some risk in the decisions we made. In the state championship game, we were down by double digits. Another coach and I looked at each other and began to discuss some options. The starters, except for one of them, were not playing, hustling or giving enough effort from our point of view.

We decided if we were going to lose in the state championship game, we would lose with effort. We took the risk and took our starters out. We put freshmen and sophomores into the game. They played with such effort and excitement. We were down by double digits, but the next thing I knew we were down by only three points.

The starters had a chance to rest and also to become energized so that we could win. We sent them back in with about five minutes left and we won the state title. It was a lot of fun to win and see the excitement in everyone’s face, but looking back as coaches we took a risk not many people are willing to do in coaching – we sat our best players.

We made a tough decision and we could have lost by 20 points or more. We were overmatched, but the players gave so much energy to the game that it turned the game around.

In our Christian life, we will have to take risks and move out of our comfort zone to follow Christ. A lot of times, growth only occurs when we start a new challenge in life, not when we are just coasting along. But one thing we do know, there is no risk in following Christ because He is in control of everything. We just need to be obedient and follow him.

—ROBERT WALKER