Coach John Calipari of the University of Kentucky Wildcats men’s basketball team has found an unusual way to motivate his players to give their best in practice. If they commit a serious basketball transgression, he makes them get on a treadmill that is located in the corner of their practice facility. The treadmill is set at 16 mph, and the offending player must stay on the treadmill for 30 seconds.
Player Josh Harrellson plans to avoid this punishment at all costs. He says, “I mean, it’s terrible…I’m not getting on that treadmill. I know that.”
Calipari said his job is to bring the best out of all his players. “Sometimes you hug them,” he said. “Other times you say, “Unacceptable.” That is the purpose of the treadmill. “We’re just holding them accountable,” the coach explains.
I think it’s helpful to see the leaders of the church as the coaching staff of the team. They need to bring out the best in their members. Paul told Titus to “…Encourage and rebuke with all authority…” (Titus 2:25). Sometimes you hug them; sometimes you let them know that their performance is unacceptable.
Christians sometimes willingly accept harsh constructive criticism from coaches and bosses, but usually chafe at the slightest correction from church leaders. My opinion is that accountability is lacking in the kingdom today.
Am I suggesting that leaders in every church install a treadmill for offending members?