Bad habits have a way of creeping back in if you don’t stay aware and alert.
In 2020, I had really disciplined myself to gain a hold on my tongue and be intentional about my words. I no longer wanted anything unwholesome, such as cursing, to come out of my mouth. Some of my teammates and I had been holding each other accountable in this way, and soon enough, my new habits included zero cursing. But at some point, that bad habit started to slowly creep back in and I had to check myself to make sure I didn’t fall into this sin again.
No matter what sins or temptations come, I want God to be at the center of my life and focus so I can reflect the life of Jesus Christ. When I make Him my focus, I can be intentional about how I respond to others, to myself and to God. The words that come out of our mouths are potent and more valuable than we often think. They have the power to give life or death (Proverbs 18:21). Not only do your words affect others, they make a great impact on your own heart and mind. Words that reflect Christ’s love and truth bring a peace and calmness to your own heart.
One of the places where I’ve seen words be most effective is within my team. When I arrive at the field each morning to train, I have a choice to either build others up or tear them down. Or I can simply show up and make no difference at all. The difference between just showing up and showing up to bring joy and excitement to the team is a big one. Letting your words speak joy and life to others is contagious; it’s infectious. You never know if someone started off the day on a rough foot or a great one, but you have the power to impact them by the way you spend yours. I don’t want to show up as if it doesn’t matter whether I’m present or not. I want to show up to spread life and light to anyone I can.
For me, it starts with the very first moments I wake up. When I wake up, I spend some intentional time praying and reading my Bible. This is a time for me to open the gates of my heart so the Holy Spirit can take over and get my heart and head in the right place. When I give God my firstfruits in this way, I let God rule my heart. Only then will I be able to see others the way He sees them, and let Him guide my actions and words for the day. It has to start with His words first.
Another thing that helps me keep my heart focused on God is listening to worship music on the radio or on a playlist I have on Spotify. I have been back to listening to primarily worship when I’m going through my day instead of the music I work out to and it helps me with my cursing, but also staying in that mindset focused on God. Worship was also a contributor to my 2019 success of not cursing and keeping firm on the Rock. He’s the only thing worth living for!
— Nate Augspurger, USA Rugby and San Diego Legion player
Nate Augspurger is a regular contributor to The Increase, providing articles and opinions. Check out Nate’s Increase profile here.
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