My boys officially started football season last night with midnight practice. This is a tradition in my area of the country as teams begin practicing the first minute they are eligible each year. For my third son, this will be the final year of his high school football career.
Moments like these trigger the nostalgia of my coaching days when the boys were little. One of my rituals was to take a few minutes at practice and ask them an important question. I would get in front of the group and say, “Who can tell me your greatest tool for sports?” Timidly someone would raise their hand and say, “Their legs.” “Nope,” I would respond. Then we went through most of the muscles in the body from arms to feet. Again, my response was, “No.” Finally, I would call one of the boys to the front, and I would point at his head and say something like, “Your mind is your greatest weapon.”
Throughout the season I would remind them of this essential truth. A situation might present itself in which the other team would get “inside their head.” They would get angry and make stupid mistakes. I would call them aside and say, “Use your head.” More than once I have turned to the team on the sideline and said, “What were they thinking?”
Great players are not just the strongest, fastest and most athletic. Usually, it is the kid who understands the other teams’ formations. They notice patterns and movements that give away the other teams’ plays. They see and comprehend what is happening before it happens, and this enables them to make plays better than those who only use brute force.
I believe this foundational principle applies to all of life. The race is not always to the swift or the steady but to the wise. They are people who process their situation and move in the right direction. The best application is for those of us who walk the path of faith. The single greatest tool we have in the fight against evil is our brain. Too often people let their emotions take over. They start thinking with their glands instead of their head. Terrible decisions could have been avoided if this person had only thought through their actions and its ramifications.
The most significant battlefield in your world is the space between your ears. You need to keep your eyes open and your mind moving at the speed of life.
I guarantee you that today evil will come knocking in your life. He will offer you a shortcut to success. He will deceive you into believing doing the wrong thing will have the right result. He will tempt with the allure of selfish desires. He will dazzle you with the immediate so that you lose sight of the eternal. Evil will try to manipulate you into choosing the wrong path.
Solomon of the Old Testament promoted wisdom throughout his writings. One of the pleas of Jesus is that we love God with all our heart, soul, and mind. Paul challenges believers to renew their mind. I am just asking you to think. The greatest tool you have to stand against evil is located between your ears, why not use it today?