I haven’t watched an entire game thus far into this year’s version of “March Madness.” I can’t even tell you what teams are in the Final Four. I can tell you that Kansas and Kentucky are both out of it. And I can tell you that there’s only one team that won’t end the season with a loss.
Remembering my own years of competition and my frequent failures as a player and then later as a coach, I’m deeply thankful for grace. I’m glad that my salvation doesn’t hinge on every shot, every pass, every decision. I’m glad that someone else loved me enough to pay the price of my guilt and take that kind of pressure off of me. I’m glad that no one can steal my crown of life, and that no one else has to lose for me to receive mine.
But I’m also aware that in life, the choices that we make and the actions that we take—even when it seems there’s no real pressure—really do matter. And the more that we practice making wise choices in simple situations, the easier it is to make them when the pressure really is on and the stakes are high.
It helps, too, to know that the coach and the ref are pulling for you.