How to Trust God? Practice, according to Tony Dungy

Trusting God can be a lot easier said than done -- it's not something you can just call up on a moment's notice!  How does it happen? Through practice according to former Super Bowl champion coach Tony Dungy.  

How does Tony Dungy know this you may be wondering?  Well, Tony Dungy had to trust God with what most people would consider to be the worst situation imaginable -- when in 2005, his 18 year old son Jamie took his own life. Tony Dungy was able to truly trust God when this awful event occurred because he had a lot of practice trusting God prior to Jamie's death.

 Tony Dungy and his son Jamie

Tony Dungy and his son Jamie

Most people know Tony Dungy for leading the Indianapolis Colts to a Super Bowl Championship in 2007 -- and being the first African American head coach to do so.  He has since retired from coaching and is now a studio analyst on NBC's popular Sunday Night Football show.  A successful career by almost all accounts.  

But what many people may forget is that Tony Dungy experienced quite a bit of career adversity as well. For example, he was:

  • Not drafted following a record-setting college football career.
  • Cut or traded by three teams during his brief four year NFL playing career.
  • Let go from several assistant coaching positions.
  • Fired as head coach of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.
  • Prematurely eliminated from the playoffs several times.
 Tony Dungy believes trusting God requires practice.

Tony Dungy believes trusting God requires practice.

In an interview with Coach Dungy, he told me the reason he was able to trust God when Jamie died was because he had learned to trust God through all the relatively smaller setbacks he had experienced earlier.

Following is an excerpt from my interview with Coach Dungy where he talks about how he learned to trust God and how you can tell how much trust you actually have::

Perhaps we should all take a page out of Tony Dungy's playbook:  practice trusting God with our relatively smaller setbacks.  We will then be prepared to trust Him when faced with life's really difficult challenges.