One Word 2017 - FAITH

My One Word for 2017 is FAITH.

The past six months have been a whirlwind with a lot of challenges and have required me to live out my One Word from 2016, perseverance.  Circumstances have now given me the opportunity to strengthen my faith and rely on God completely in 2017.  Part of me is anxious for 2017 and the other part of me is eager and excited.  It's a daily battle to trust God and understand that He has a plan, but that's the reason that I have chosen faith as my One Word.

I typically feel like I have control over most things in my life and have the ability to make things happen, but I'm learning that there are some things outside of my control that require complete surrender to God.  2017 is going to bring change, that's a given.  I don't know what that change will look like, but I know that my faith & trust in God is going to be at the forefront of everything.  Each decision I make for my family will come from a deep understanding that God is in control.  

While I might not know what my future holds, I will always know who holds my future.  When challenges are met with faith, perseverance becomes very powerful.  I'm so excited to embark on this faith journey in 2017 with my wife and two girls!  Your prayers and support are always welcome as I know that I will struggle to live out this One Word consistently.  This year is going to be one to remember - let's make the best of it!

Past One Word's:

2017 - Faith

2016 - Persevere

2015 - Serve

2014 - Immediacy 

3 Essentials To Overcome Adversity

Adversity is simply defined as 'a difficult situation'.  Overcoming is as simple as 'prevailing in success'.  Both are easy to understand on their own, but together they are a contradiction opposed to one another.  

When I was four years old, I was diagnosed with a rare heart disease, Ebstein's anomaly.  Without getting into the entire lengthy story (you can read more in depth here if you'd like: Heart of a Coach), I was faced with a lot of adversity throughout my life.  Some adversity is very minor, such as fatigue or limited participation, but some adversity was more serious like open heart surgeries gone wrong.  This week marks the 13th anniversary of my heart surgeries, so I've been thinking about how grateful I am.  I want to use my story as an example and encouragement to you and your players if you are facing the challenge of overcoming adversity.  Here are three simple things that I've learned:


Adversity will present itself in your life at some point or another.  Sometimes you will have an opportunity to prepare for it and other times you will not.  Either way, it is wise for you to prepare yourself mentally for when that time comes.   Think about how you want to deal with adversity when it comes.  What will you say?  How will you say it?  Who will you be?  If you wait until adversity strikes to prepare yourself, you will find yourself being reactive.  Typically, your reactions will be negative.  Be proactive!


If you are proactive in your preparation mentally, you will find it much easier to be positive.  It's natural for negativity to creep in and no one will think you're wrong for being frustrated, but it's how you respond to those feelings that will allow you to overcome.  You have a choice to respond negatively or positively, and whatever road you choose will ultimately lead you to your destination.  Sometimes you will make the wrong turn, but it will be in your best interest to re-route as soon as possible.  If you stay focused on the positives, you will overcome adversity!


Sometimes it's hard, but find the opportunity in every situation.  Although adversity sucks in the moment, it is often a prerequisite for success.  If you prepare mentally and stay positive through the adversity, chances are good that you will get through it and be better for it.  It will be a constant battle in your mind, but keep making the right choices when it comes to your attitude.  Establish a vision, devise a plan, and see the opportunity at the end of the road!

Everybody has their own way of dealing with adversity, but I hope that these basic thoughts will encourage you to keep going!  I believe that God has a plan and he is sovereign in my life.  Because I believe that truth, I am able to live out the gospel through adversity.  It's not always easy and I don't always succeed, but I know that God is in control! I am thankful for the adversity in my life.

The big time is not a place, it’s the state of your heart.
— Frosty Westering

Confident Faith

“Confident faith” is a characteristic that we as coaches need to embrace every day of our lives.  Acts 6:1-7 is a great demonstration of “confident faith,” as the apostle Paul writes about discipleship.  The church was upset with numerous things involving widows and therefore, the 12 disciples gave them a talk and told the congregation to pick seven men of good reputation to lead them.  The people liked what they had to say and decided to choose seven men to lead them.  The chosen seven were: Stephen, Philip, Prochorus, Nicanor, Timon, Parmenas, and Nicolaus.  You may have never heard of them before, but we read that the reason they were so special was because Paul tells us they were, “full of faith and of the Holy Spirit.”  We see at the end of the passage that the Word of God continued to be preached, the number of disciples multiplied, and even priests were being obedient to this faith!  How did this core group of seven chosen leaders accomplish this calling?  They were full of “confident faith,” and these are the characteristics that it displays.

1.    Confident faith sees every failure as an opportunity to get better.

James chapter 1 tells us to, "count it all joy..."  Through both failure and trials, we need to see them as an opportunity to become better.

2.  Confident faith spends its time doing what it's called to do.

Don't get discouraged if you are not an expert in your calling right away.  Despite the lack of experience, it is essential to stick to what you're called to do!

3.    Confident faith chooses the right people to tackle the problem.

The congregation chose 7 men who were full of the spirit and wisdom.  The people that they chose were already in the church, but they just needed to be noticed.  Find somebody who is passionate about fixing the problem even if they aren't experts.

4.    Confident faith trusts the team to come up with the solution. 

Have faith in your team.  Don't try to do everything on you own.  The 12 disciples could have tried to fix everything on their own, but instead they allowed the church to pick their own leaders to find a solution.