One of the greatest fighters who ever lived, Muhammad Ali, once said:
“The fight is won or lost far away from witnesses…it’s won behind the lines, in the gym, and out there on the road long before I dance under those lights.”
We’re all familiar with the exuberant elation that comes from winning something. We equate winning with being the best and the greatest within our league. Let’s face it, there’s just something about the thrill of power that comes with the number one spot.
On the other hand, I’m sure most of us have had the experience of being served the bitter dish of defeat by an opponent. This can conjure up emotions of agony that totally deflates our egos causing severe “pride-reversal.”
Although this paradigm exists, there are those that seem to have a knack for winning. They always win the title belts, the gold medals, and the trophies. They are the champions of our day.
What do those people do differently? Some may argue that it’s strictly genetics. Although this may be true on some level, I believe there is a system or a process for ensuring victory in our lives which can be summed up by the Five P’s of victory:
Passion is defined as a strong feeling of enthusiasm or excitement for something or about doing something. Passion is the engine deep down in your belly that keeps you doing what you love, even when you’re tired, nervous, or even hurting. Passion is the power that pulls you through your process. It’s the secret weapon of success. What you are passionate about is often an indicator of your true calling. Even though this is the most fundamental indicator of your intrinsic purpose, it is perhaps the most elusive. God has placed within you certain abilities and giftings that set you apart from everyone else. It’s up to you to accept the challenge of unlocking the God-given power within you by discovering and embracing your unique passions.
If you expect to be an overcomer, then you must be passionate about your purpose. Passion is what locks you into the “why” of what you’re doing. In the absence of passion, quitting becomes easy. What’s pulling you into your purpose?
All champions have one thing in common; on some level, they value training, coaching, and development. Training is the process of conditioning via instruction, discipline, or drill. It is the preparation for a test of skill. Generally speaking, it is the passageway through which the ordinary walks to become extraordinary.
I am a Black Belt in Tae-Kwon-Do, and have received several awards and trophies in the categories of forms and sparring. I recall the days leading up to a tournament or testing, and how physically and mentally demanding it was. I never enjoyed the process that I had to endure to produce excellence, but when those trophies were in my hands, the pain of the process seemed to dissipate.
God’s plan for your life is worth your present pain. Diamonds must be cut before their brilliance is truly revealed. Gold must be liquified before its purest form is revealed. In like manner, the treasure that is within you must endure a refining process before your true essence and beauty is manifested. 1 Peter 1:7 states:
That the trial of your faith, being much more precious than of gold that perisheth, though it be tried with fire, might be found unto praise and honour and glory at the appearing of Jesus Christ, [KJV].
A very interesting phenomenon takes place during the training and developmental process. Put very simply…you change. If change does not happen on some level, then the efficacy of the process must be called into question. You gradually become stronger, faster, wiser, and more confident. The journey itself challenges you as you navigate the course required to reach your destination. In turn, the obstacles that you encounter change you as they force you to reevaluate your current condition in relation to the desired goal.
When we pray for certain things, in most cases, God will answer with process. For instance, you may pray for a spouse, but God may answer with a very difficult person that you have to work with on your job. The process of working with that person sets you on a journey of self-discovery, where you learn that you are very impatient. God’s message to you is this: before He brings that special someone into your life, you must learn patience. The co-worker is just a pawn in the process. When you learn to be patient with your co-worker, you’ll be better equipped to exercise that same muscle of patience with the person who will one day be your spouse.
The strength to bear the weight of what comes with your destiny is only acquired on the road to your destiny. God is more concerned with your ability to maintain the demands that come with the next level, than the glory of crossing the finish line.
What do you do when it’s time to execute? Can you handle the pressure of being on the grand stage, or do you experience the dreaded “performance anxiety?”
This phase of the process is where battles are either won or lost. You can spend all your time training for the big day, but if you can’t fully execute, then all of your hard work will be in vain. God always affords us opportunities to execute what we have learned in theory. Hearing the word of God taught in church is like training on a punching bag. The opponent isn’t real and it doesn’t punch back. The real fight is in the ring of temptation and tribulation, when the real enemy, Satan, engages you on the battlefield of your mind.
When it’s time to perform, can you produce the will to execute what the drills were designed to teach? The performance always reveals weaknesses in your training. How you train is how you perform. Any fighter worth his weight in gold knows that in order to perform at the highest level on fight day, he must push past his limits during his training. If he skips training days and binges on Doritos and Honey Buns everyday, then fight day will reveal those weaknesses and punish them in like fashion.
Process is designed to reward diligence and punish indolence. You get to choose the outcome of your performance based on how you handle your process.
In the world of sports, victory is never guranteed. That’s what makes sports so magnetic. It’s the charge of adrenaline that comes from witnessing the end result of training and its ensuing victory. Champions aren’t champions just because they win, they are champions because of how they think. A champion expects victory even though he knows that victory is never guaranteed. The expectation of victory increases the probability of experiencing victory.
You should be jumping for joy now as you read this, because you live by a different law called the Law of the Spirit of Life (Romans 8: 2). This law guarantees victory in your life when certain conditions are met. 1 John 5:4 states:
For whatsoever is born of God overcometh the world: and this is the victory that overcometh the world, even our faith, [KJV].
Beloved, if you have been born again, you are guaranteed victory. You’re an overcomer, but you must have faith in the victory Christ has won. Through him, you have already overcome your greatest struggles. It’s not just about winning, it’s about overcoming through the blood of Jesus.
Your process has prepared you for the very battle that you are facing now. The enemy is no match for you and your Lord Christ. Victory in Christ is guaranteed. Together with him, you can conquer every opponent that tries to take your crown.
Romans 8: 35, 37: Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword? Nay, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him that loved us, [KJV].
As always, thank you for visiting Wisdom’s Quill. See you soon.
Editor: Jaime Evans