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I hear it every week on television sports broadcasts and occasionally from the mouths of players and coaches, “We play with a swagger…” “This team has a real swagger about it.” What do they mean when they say it? From where does swagger come? Is it a good thing or not?

For some, their swagger is a strong confidence which comes from hard work, good coaching, and sharpened skills. The real, authentic swagger is genuine and resides in the players’ hearts.

For others, their swagger is a mask of hollow bravado which covers their inadequacy, their fear and poor preparation. The false, imitation swagger is plastic and resides in the players’ imaginations.

On the field of competition, it’s easy to discern the difference between the two. False swagger reveals itself when the first moment of adversity arrives and it tucks its tail in retreat. Authentic swagger is equally apparent when the same adversity reveals a solid confidence and unshakable emotional composure.

We who play our hearts out often seem to have an attitude characterized as swagger. Let’s be sure to check the source of such swagger. Is it authentic or artificial?

Check out the devotional "Swagger" by Randy Chambers at

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