One of the most consistent and reliable players in the NFL is Dallas Cowboys’ tight end, Jason Witten. On and off the field, Witten leads by example in his very serious approach to being prepared for competition at a high level.

Witten recently responded to what he’s working on while heading into his 14th season in the league: “Everything. Start over. I think for me even more so now… I started from scratch and watch every play then I go into the stance, catching, blocking all those things that go into what I want to do and how I want to play. I think if you don’t start over and go through that process sometimes you get through it a little bit quicker in certain situations but for me I think that’s the only way you can approach it.”

I appreciate that Witten’s preparation strategy involves starting over each season with an emphasis on his stance, catching, and blocking…instead of just coasting through and thinking he’s already figured it all out. It sounds like he retrains and reminds himself each year to soak things in and not rush through the process that’s needed to grow as a player.

In our own lives, I believe the approach to “start over” can be effective in our daily walk with Jesus. As we get going with our day, we willingly acknowledge God, surrender ourselves to Him, submit to His will, and commit to putting aside our selfish desires.  Each new day we “start over” and go through this process to truly follow Jesus.

 Jesus puts it this way in Luke 9:23 (NLT), “Then He said to the crowd, ‘If any of you wants to be my follower, you must give up your own way, take up your cross daily, and follow me.'”

 I think it’s very important to remember we must take up our cross daily. The process must begin fresh each day by dying to our selfish desires and giving up our own way. As challenging as it may be…when we follow the One who saves us, guides us, and loves us, the outcome is well worth it. I’m Bryce Johnson and you can unpack that!

PRAYER: Heavenly Father, as I begin this day, I acknowledge my need for You. I desire to serve You, surrender to You, and follow Jesus closely. Help me to die to my selfish desires and truly live in a way that is pleasing to You. In Jesus’ name I pray, Amen.