Working on One’s Form

Dear Reader,

I have been watching my kids at tennis classes the past week and half or so. There are some kids who are good. There are some who aren’t so good. Among those who need some work, there can be a few ways they go wrong. Some, like my youngest daughter, swing the right way (low to high, end at your shoulder), but they have no strength. Others seem to consistently get their swing wrong, smashing down on the ball. They will occasionally get a shot over the net, but they are hampered by their technique.

So the coaches have to continually say the same things: “point your feet the right way”, “swing low to high”, “follow through” . . . I think the kids probably get tired of hearing these things. Some who get  a fair numbers of balls over the net may wonder what all the fuss is about. But the coaches know that even if you return some volleys, you will never get better beyond a certain point is you don’t have the right form.

I have seen the same thing when my older kids do archery. There is a lot to worry about there when it comes to form. They have been doing it for more than a year and it seems there is always more to learn, or at least review. A bulls-eye is great and very rewarding. But often the coaches are happier with a shot that looks good to them even if it doesn’t hit the center of the target.

And I was thinking about all this in terms of our spiritual walks. How often to we worry about our form? Do we adhere to godly standards because they are godly standards? Or do we cut corners, maybe tell a fib or two, break our word once in a while, or commit some other minor infraction because the results all look the same to us anyway? We all want to get the shot over the net. We all want to hit a bulls-eye. But our Coach cares a lot more about our form than anything else. He wants is to adhere to the standards and not to worry about the results or how they look to others.

The thing about practicing your positioning is that it is not exciting. It does astound others, and often is just not even very interesting. But God says that those who are faithful in little things will be given bigger jobs to do. So let’s buckle down and not neglect the details. If God has told us to point our feet in one direction, we need to do it and not worry about where the ball will end up. That’s His department.



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