During training camp this year, I was really happy with the regularity and consistency I was able to keep up with my devotions. By waking up by 5:15 a.m. each day, I was able to get in the Word every single morning. No matter how tired I was, I would get out of bed and immediately dive in. But the real test came when I got home.
Spending time with God is the No. 1 thing in my life. It’s not football, it’s not family, it’s about my relationship with Christ. If my relationship with Christ is on point, everything else will fall into place. The Bible talks about the husband being the head of the household (Ephesians 5:23); if I’m connected with God, my family and career will fall into place under the authority I have through Christ. I am my family’s rock and leader. If I’m not in line with God’s role for my life, none of the other aspects of my life will work out.
I am very aware of this. When my kids are being disobedient or when I myself say or do things that are wrong, but don’t feel very convicted by them, I realize I’m not walking as closely as I should be with Christ. Things in my life start to falter when I’m not consistently plugged in. Prayer time with my family, devotions with my wife and the priority of spending time alone with God becomes faint. This is the challenge I face as the craziness of the season approaches — to keep Christ first at all times. And having just added another child to our family equation doesn’t give me an excuse; if anything, it gives me an advantage to spend more time with Christ. I have another person to pray for, pray with and lead to Christ!
Temptations and distractions will come, but God gives every man a way of escape. Whether you use it or not is up to you. I remember a few years ago when Matt Forte was with us on the Jets, he was always someone who held us accountable. It seemed like every time I was scrolling through my Instagram feed and a questionable picture came up, he was right behind me. I can still hear his voice when I find myself in a situation like that. When you have teammates like that, who are willing to hold each other up, it helps. Surround yourself with people who are fighting the same battles you are and are ready to fight alongside you.
I want someone to call me out when I’m faltering. So in turn, I will call others out when I see them stumble. If you know someone who claims to be a follower of Christ and you witness something that seems off in their behavior, say something. The approach is something you’ll have to work on — sharing the truth in love. But this is what Christ calls us to when He talks about iron sharpening iron (Proverbs 27:17).
Who is in your locker room?
— Kelvin Beachum, New York Jets left tackle
Kelvin Beachum is a regular contributor to The Increase and provides monthly articles and opinions. Check out Kelvin’s Increase profile here: https://theincrease.com/author/kelvin-beachum/
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