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  • Chris Scott

That all important extra mile!

The difference between success and failure is much smaller than we think

Posted by Chris Scott (Senior Leader Bridge Church)

Kobe Bryant was a former professional basketball player who tragically died at the age of 42yrs in a plane crash in Jan 2020. He was widely regarded as one of the greatest basketball players of all time.

In 2012 he was selected to represent the United States in the Olympic Games. In preparation for this, it is said that he got up at 4am every morning and ran sprints from 4.30am-6am, then he moved to the gym where he lifted weights from 6am-7am, before finally practicing 800 jump shots between 7am and 11am. And all of this before he joined the regular team practice at 11am!!

Even though he was already in peak physical fitness and at the top of his game, he understood that if he wanted to succeed, he had to continually raise his game with each new challenge. He didn’t presume that all his previous achievements and experiences would guarantee he could give his best now. Kobe didn’t become one of the greatest players ever by accident. He didn’t reach the heights that he did, by simply doing what everyone else did. No, he went the extra mile! While the regulars started at 11am, Kobe started at 4am! And that’s what set him apart!

Going the extra mile means living in such a way that you go beyond what is considered necessary or expected by other people. It has nothing to do with doing just enough to get by, or even fulfilling an obligation. It’s an inner passion that regards expectation as something to be exceeded not just met!

The extra mile principle is powerful. It propels us beyond the average. It reveals our true passion and demonstrates a refusal to settle for just enough. The extra mile can be costly or sacrificial of course, but it is an investment in your own character and will always give you an edge.

It doesn’t take much extra to make a huge difference either. Just a little extra goes a long way. Think about water being heated to a temperature of 99°. That’s really very hot indeed but it is still water! Add one extra degree and it becomes steam, which is powerful enough to power trains and much more!

What can you give an extra degree to today? Where can you go the extra mile in your work place, your marriage, your devotion to God, your kids, or maybe even your health? You may not need to get up at 4am and start sprinting, but can you give an extra 10mins in prayer or devotion. How about rearranging your schedule, so you can give more time to your family or church? Even if you think you already do enough, that’s my point! Go the extra mile.

Why limit yourself to doing just enough or settle for what you have simply got to used to. Let’s be a people who pursue a ‘more than enough’ lifestyle. Let’s invest more than is necessary to merely maintain those important areas of our life but instead let’s grow in our capacity to live above the norm. I guarantee it will reap great dividends in your life.

By the way the USA won the basketball gold medal in 2012, just in case you were wondering. No great surprise there, I guess!

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