Developing Your Core by Tony Dungy and Nathan Whitaker - Read Online
Developing Your Core
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52 selections from Tony Dungy’s New York Times bestseller The One Year Uncommon Life Daily Challenge, now in a weekly format! With a reading for every week in the year, this book will lead you to go deeper in your work, with your family, and in your faith. Super Bowl–winning former head coach Tony Dungy shares keys to strengthening your core values and doing what it takes to win the right way. Perfect for sports teams, small groups, or personal reflection, The Uncommon Life Weekly Challenge books will show you how to create a life of real significance and impact in your world.

Read all seven! The complete Uncommon Life Weekly Challenge series includes the following: Achieving Your Potential Building Your Team Developing Your Core Living Your Life’s Purpose Maximizing Your Influence Strengthening Your Faith Strengthening Your Family
Published: Tyndale House Publishers on
ISBN: 9781414392233
List price: $2.99
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Developing Your Core - Tony Dungy

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How to Use This Weekly Challenge

We hope you will enjoy reading The Uncommon Life Weekly Challenge—Developing Your Core. The core concepts in this devotional were taken from The One Year Uncommon Life Daily Challenge—a book we collaborated on together.

While The Uncommon Life Weekly Challenge—Developing Your Core offers weekly readings instead of daily ones, our hope is that the format will prove useful for regular doses of encouragement and strength—one for each week of the year. It’s possible that instead of getting together every day for devotions, your family opts for a weekly devotional time. Or maybe you’re a coach or a sports chaplain who has set aside time once a week for devotions with your team. Or perhaps you attend a weekly prayer meeting that would benefit from a short devotional time. It may also be the case that weekly personal devotions fit better into your schedule than a daily devotional routine. On the flip side, another option is to go ahead and read the devotions on a daily basis, either consecutively for fifty-two days or sporadically throughout the year. Whether read on a daily or weekly basis, or in a group or an individual setting, the fundamentals highlighted in The Uncommon Life Weekly Challenge—Developing Your Core will keep you anchored in God’s Word. And check out for more resources.

Each Core Concept includes Scripture and an Uncommon Key—an application or action to implement based on what you’ve just read. This isn’t just a read-it-and-you’re-done type of devotional. The goal is not only to engage your mind but also to challenge your heart with the core principles of God’s message to us through his Word, the Bible.

If you miss a week, keep going. Don’t try to catch up, and don’t feel guilty. Last week is gone—spend time with God today. Our prayer is that every week you will be blessed by what you read and challenged to do more for God’s Kingdom.

Tony Dungy

Nathan Whitaker


Core Concept: A Personal Training Plan

I discipline my body like an athlete, training it to do what it should. Otherwise, I fear that after preaching to others I myself might be disqualified.

1 Corinthians 9:27

Self-control. Discipline. Getting in shape. A new commitment to stick to the plan.

How many times have you written down these goals or thought about them just before January 1? In a CNN report on New Year’s resolutions, it wasn’t surprising to learn that losing weight is the most common goal people set. In fact, I would guess that year after year that rarely changes—it will always be up there. It’s what fitness centers across the country gear up for: an influx of new customers and increased revenue in January more than any other time of the year.

And then we come to our senses—around February.

When I was a player, we’d see that occasionally when training camp rolled around. Professional football wasn’t a year-round enterprise then, and guys had jobs in the off-season. Some would show up totally out of shape when camp began.

As followers of Christ, we should maintain self-control and discipline, especially when it comes to taking care of our bodies. Getting in shape and making a commitment to stay that way honors God. He has given us our bodies through the miracle of creation. Taking care of them, watching what we put into them, and being careful about how we use them each day are responsibilities we shouldn’t take lightly.

But that mind-set is not only important for our physical bodies. That desire and discipline also apply to the training we do and the commitment we make to ourselves and to God. We commit to learn more about Him and about how we can be better disciples. It’s not a passive endeavor. It takes resolve and repetition, consistently working at it for maximum results. And results will happen as we grow closer to Him. Real success in achieving goals—whether they were set on January 1 or not—comes when we know we can’t do it by ourselves and look to the Lord for strength.

Where do you need improvement? More physical training for your body, taking care of the temple He gave you? Or getting to know Him better, spending time in His Word and with Him in prayer?

I’d recommend both on a regular basis. And ask God to be your trainer, to be there when you need to be pushed a little harder. He will give you the strength to help make your resolutions realities.

UNCOMMON KEY > Moving from desire to actually doing better is only achieved with self-discipline, and self-discipline only works effectively when you trust in Him to help. Amp up your self-discipline in the areas you need it most.


Core Concept: Humility Speaks Louder

Those who exalt themselves will be humbled, and those who humble themselves will be exalted.

Matthew 23:12

How often have we seen someone blowing his own horn—or trying to—only to have it blow up in his face?

It happens on a regular basis in the world of sports. There’s the player who brags before the game about a sure victory because his performance alone will make it happen, and then he has one of his worst games ever. Or the player who is showboating in the middle of a play, high stepping it toward the end zone after badly beating the defensive coverage on a long pass play, and he drops the ball just before he crosses over the goal line into the end zone. No touchdown.

As former University of Texas football coach Darrell Royal said, Act like you’ve been there before.

Even though my sport has been football, I respect how difficult the game of baseball is—especially deciding in about a quarter of a second whether to swing at a ball being hurled at ninety-five miles per hour toward your head. I can appreciate someone who just hit a home run running around the bases cheering himself with fist pumps. But you show more respect toward the pitcher if you implement Coach Royal’s motto and express humility.

In Luke 18:9-14, Jesus describes an incident of showboating in the story of the praying Pharisee and tax collector. Both men were in the Temple. The Pharisee, a religious leader, thanked God that he wasn’t a sinner like the other people around him. The tax collector, on the other hand, lamented his sins with regret to God. To the astonishment of his listeners, Jesus says it is the tax collector who is justified before God, not the Pharisee. Then He concludes by saying, Those who exalt themselves will be humbled, and those who humble themselves will be exalted (verse 14).

Have you caught yourself saying or doing something with an intentional look at me attitude? It can happen to anyone. And so can falling flat on your face and eating humble pie.