I am not a New England Patriots fan. I have always cheered against them in the big games. But I must admit they have been extremely successful. While Belichick has his flaws and detractors, I really appreciated the attitude behind this answer yesterday (12-6-17).
Question from reporter: “With all you have accomplished in your coaching career, what is left that you still want to accomplish?”
Belichick’s answer: “I’d like to go out and have a good practice today. That would be at the top of the list right now.”
Belichick’s answer is not what most people expect. In fact, it is likely not what most people would have said. It was an opportunity for the experienced coach to reflect on his past and toot his own horn about his past championships. It was an opportunity to talk about his current dreams and goals. He could have spoken about winning the Super Bowl this year and what that would mean to him. Instead, he stayed in the present. He focused on the short-term need at the moment to winning another championship. He was not distracted with the past or the distant future. For him at this moment, he wanted to have a good practice.
There is a great leadership lesson in his answer. Great leaders don’t rest on the accomplishments of the past, nor completely live on the dreams of the future, but they focus on doing what needs to be done well today.
Churches need this message. We can focus on what we used to be and the glorious works that have been done. We can focus on the dreams and goals for the distant future. But most of our energy needs to be on making this day, this coming Sunday, this next worship, this next ministry the best it can be.
I need this reminder as a preacher. I have to focus on what needs to be done today in order for us to accomplish great things in the future. It may just be a good practice today, that has little fan fair, but it can lead to a Super Bowl in a couple of months!