By Stewart Holloway
What does it take to be a champion?
It has been fun to watch LSU football this year. Since I work Sunday, I usually go to bed on Saturdays long before the game is over, but I couldn’t do it this year. It was too much fun to watch the team work as a unit to execute amazing plays, and I loved the sincere passion of Coach O. The man is living his dream. Not many of us get to do that, but he is – and he is making the most of it. I’ve also enjoyed watching our oldest son fall in love with LSU. After making a few games at Tiger Stadium with my mom, he’s hooked. He may even rival Rebecca’s passion in the years to come (but good luck with that).
As a leader, I’ve watched this season asking, “What’s the difference?” I’m sure there were a lot of football technicalities at work, but it was the leadership of Coach O that I think made the difference. It is obvious Coach O genuinely loves this state, LSU, his team, his staff, and the fans. While love motivates, it was wisdom that brought the difference. Coach O was wise enough to realize that he didn’t have all the answers, so he recruited the right players, hired the right people, and even brought in others to speak into his team through the year on key points. The result was a unified team that performed like a machine – One Team. One Heartbeat.
Without people like quarterback Joe Burrow and coaches like Brady, Ensminger and Aranda, LSU would not be national champions, However, without Coach O seeing the potential and building the team and staff, they wouldn’t have ever even had the chance to be. Without Coach O, Joe Burrow wouldn’t be a household name, and LSU would still be running the same old predictable offense of days gone by.
What does it take to be a champion? Humility that leads to wisdom. Coach O is confident, but there is humility behind the gruff voice and the “We comin’!” You can see it in the pride-filled tears in his eyes after every win and the way he constantly points to the others who helped make it happen.
If you want to be a champion, allow humility to lead you to wisdom. Get over yourself and onto the goal. Seek God’s wisdom and allow Him to assemble around you exactly who and what you need to be who He wants you to be. You may not win a national championship and get a hefty raise like Coach O, but you can celebrate the victories God brings you each day as you walk in humble, wise obedience.
Stewart Holloway is pastor of First Baptist Church in Pineville. This editorial first appeared on his Facebook page, facebook.com/StewartHolloway.