Prepare, Initiate, Execute, Finish
An article on How We Can Live Our Lives Like Jesus Did
Before we compete, athletes must be prepared for competition.
We must prepare spirituality, emotionally, physically and mentally for competition.
We prepare spiritually by simply going to God in prayer and asking him for courage and strength, safety for us and our opponent, asking for fair officiating, and most of all that we are able to submit to His will before, during and after our competition.
We prepare emotionally by accepting before the competition, the victory or loss without any unnecessary emotional outbursts. We are grateful for victory because a victory reflects the hard work and preparation. We are grateful for a loss because a loss reflects our need to be better prepared.
We prepare physically by warming up our muscles, stretching, getting our heart rate up. We perform agility drills. We make sure our body is warm and ready to compete.
We prepare mentally by rehearsing a competition in our minds. We see ourselves performing at the best of our ability. We see ourselves performing to the end of the competition perfectly as we have trained to do. We see our hand being raised in victory and the handshake at the end of the competition.
From children to Olympians, every athlete at some time has hesitated to initiate technique. After the competition begins, the athlete at some point must initiate technique in order to score.
We may hesitate out of fear or just not being ready to initiate. The problem with hesitation is that our opponent may not hesitate as he initiates technique and we find ourselves on the defense. If we have prepared for the competition as set out above, we are less likely to hesitate when an opportunity to score presents itself.
Once we initiate technique, we must continue to execute the technique properly. Proper execution of technique is a result of hours of training, learning the correct technique to be applied at the proper time during competition.
The old adage “Practice makes perfect” is not actually true.
Perfect practice makes perfect.
We must learn proper technique and then practice the technique perfectly. During training we cannot allow ourselves to slack off and just “go through the motions.” We must practice perfect technique in order to execute proper technique during an actual competition.
When we initiate and execute technique perfectly, our opponent is on the defense. Unfortunately, a good opponent that is prepared for our attack may halt our progress. Now we must finish our technique with power and assurance knowing that when we finish our perfectly executed technique we will score.
The cycle of initiating, executing, and finishing technique varies with each sport.
The opportunity to initiate, execute and finish technique may present itself rarely in some sports and in others the cycle may be a constant action of performance. If we are to be victorious in competition we must prepare spiritually, emotionally, physically, and mentally before we compete. We must initiate, execute and finish perfect technique during competition.
The ultimate and perfect example of this cycle can be seen during the last hours of Jesus Christ before he was crucified.
In the garden of Gethsemane outside Jerusalem, Jesus prepared for his battle against evil. He prepared mentally and physically to endure whatever beating he might experience as he went to the cross. Jesus and God the Father shared the powerful emotion of love so much that Jesus shed tears for all mankind, as he prepared to enter into battle with evil. Jesus prayed to God “…not my will, but yours be done.” Now Jesus was prepared to initiate, execute and finish the plan of salvation for all mankind.
Jesus initiated the battle against evil. Jesus lived a sinless life and was the only one able to pay for the sins of the world. He willingly went to trial without having committed any crime. He executed the plan God had for him. Jesus endured the beatings, the wrongful accusations and finally, and he was hung on the cross to die for us all. He finished paying for the sins of all mankind. Just before Jesus died on the cross he said “It is finished.”
He finished what God had asked him to do.
He did it perfectly and according to the will of God. Jesus Christ miraculously rose from the grave three days after he died on the cross. The death, burial, and resurrection of Jesus Christ was foretold by prophets hundreds of years before he was born on earth. The Gospel of Jesus Christ changed the world forever.
May we live our lives as Jesus Christ did 2000 years ago. Trusting in God to prepare us for whatever his will may be, and may we initiate, execute and finish whatever God has for us to do.