Hunger, Habits, Humility
For IWUHoops, each season is a journey of men in the program trading the pursuit of me for the pursuit of 3. Through intentional prayer, Bible study and community, God has continued to reveal new depths of an IAm3rd life.
The 2016-2017 journey was one of a team filled with apathy learning to live a life marked by hunger, habits and humility. Read Coach T's thoughts on this transformation HERE
This offseason and preseason have seen IWUHoopers pursuing 'hunger, habits and humility.' A pursuit of Hunger sets you in motion. Habits keep you in motion. Humility puts others in motion. This pattern has taken some of the men in the program beyond mere growth and into transformation. Over the next few weeks, we invite you to check back on the blog often to hear the stories of what the team is learning and who the players within the program are becoming.
Becoming A Team With the right habits
This year our team has been studying how much our habits can influence our lives. Habits do not only control our routine, but they direct our thoughts, actions, feelings, and relationships. The habits we form will determine the type of people we become.
The dictionary definition of a habit is “a settled or regular tendency or practice, especially one that is hard to give up.” To me, this definition puts a negative connotation on the word habit. This definition focuses the word “habits” on the things we are doing. Our team has been exploring what it means to develop habits not only to determine the things we do, but developing habits to determine who we are becoming.. Habits don’t have to be be things that restrict us or pull us away from Christ, but instead give us freedom and allow us to become more like Him.
From personal experience, I have learned that our greatest failures are often the pathway to our greatest successes. My growth in forming good habits comes because the poor habits I had early in my career almost led me out of the game completely. You can read about that here. While this was challenging period of my life, the struggle I went through was the way for me to experience the transformation this program desires to have.
Through these failures, here are a few things I have learned during my career here at IWU:
1. Heavenly habits are intentional--We need to seek out what we want to become. If our pursuit of becoming is holy and pure, then in turn our habits will develop naturally. Our habits are often rooted in what we are hungry for. So, the more heavenly our hunger, the more heavenly our habits will become.
2. Be steadfast--Times will come when you will have doubts, insecurities, or your hunger just isn’t there. The book of James tells us to “consider it pure joy whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance. Let perseverance finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything.” We may drift toward doubts, questions, or even turning away from what is good at certain points in our life. We need to pursue these times with joy and seek truth because these are often the times we will grow the most.
3. Accountability is key--Good habits are really hard to form on your own. If you’re trying to build habits by yourself, you are bound to fail. God uses other people for His purpose and we need to use that in order to grow. When the hunger dies down, we need someone there to encourage us and remind us why we are doing what we are doing.
4. Humble habits produce fruit--I have seen to be true in my life over and over. God uses our habits and successes that comes from them to influence people in ways we cannot even imagine. Developing a habits to surrender to God will grow and spread because this habit almost always leaves us focused on others.
The growth in my life shows the power of being on a team. On my worst days, I have a teammate who can show me the way, and hopefully on my best days, I am able to help them in return. Learning this in the community we have on our team gives me a greater desire to find a church and accountability system when I leave IWU next year. In the meantime, I am excited to see what each man in this program can become as we continue to develop great habits!
-Ben Carlson, Senior