It’s nearing football playoff time (in the NFL and major college teams), so you’ve probably been longing for a good Green Bay Packers reference in one of my blogs. And it’s getting close to Christmas, so you’d think I would reference that, too. Here goes.
A couple of weeks ago I heard an interview with Packers’ quarterback, Aaron Rodgers. As of this writing, most people think he’ll be chosen as the National Football League’s Most Valuable Player this year. The interviewer asked Rodgers a great question, which basically went like this:
“You’re regarded as one of the top players in football, a legend in your time. How do you related to newcomers on the team–rookies–who must feel some intimidation around you?”
Rodgers gave a thoughtful response, and then he added his challenge.
“For every young player, myself included, there’s kind of an ‘I Belong’ moment, where you make a play, you make a throw, absorb a hit, make an extra move or a stiff arm or something that kind of lets you know that you belong at this level and in this game. And everybody needs to have that moment. It’s a big confidence jump that takes place in your mind.”
Rodgers went on to say that the way he deals with rookies is that he challenges them to come to him when they have their “I belong” moment. It’s the moment when they know they’re in.
I like that, and it reminds me of a principle of coaching–whether in athletics, personal life, ministry. It’s our job to build confidence by liberating each other through support and challenge. We help one another by bringing assurances that we have what it takes–that we belong.
So I’m reminded of what the Apostle Paul wrote to his disciple (and rookie pastor) Timothy: “Don’t let anyone look down on you because you are young, but set an example for the believers in speech, in conduct, in love, in faith and in purity.” (I Timothy 4:12).
Be on the lookout for how you can help others with their “I belong” moment this week.