What Are You Going To Do Next?

It has been a hard week to be Pete Carroll, the head coach of the Seattle Seahawks. He has had a lot of success in his career as a football coach but one call he made in last Sunday’s Super Bowl will forever be etched in NFL history as a colossal blunder. We all blunder from time to time, but when your mistake is made on the biggest stage in the world, it can be especially hard to bear.
Now don’t get me wrong. I’m not losing any sleep over Mr. Carroll’s plight. I’m sure his millions of dollars have comforted him satisfactorily in the midst of his embarrassment.

But I bring this up simply to point out what we all already know. That we all make decisions that, in hindsight, we know we should not have made. We all mess up, sometimes very publicly. Making bad decisions, saying stupid things, etc., failing to notice what is glaringly obvious to others, make us all wish that we had a do-over button.

As I was typing just now, I had a notification from a sports app on my phone quoting J.J. Watt, commenting on today being National Signing Day when high school football players determine where they will play their college football. These high school kids are ranked with stars as a gage for how good some “experts” believe they are as prospects. Mr. Watt said, “It’s not all about how many stars you have or how many cameras show up at your signing. It’s what you do next.”

Mr. Watt knows whereof he speaks. He was a two-star player coming out of high school, not very high. Today, he is widely regarded as being one of the best players in the NFL. So the question speaks to us all who have failed embarrassingly, miserably, repeatedly, maybe even publicly. What are you going to do next?

Brad Fry

Published in: on February 4, 2015 at 1:54 pm  Comments (2)  
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Some Life Lessons from Baseball

What home field advantage? The Texas Rangers made major league baseball history by winning three road games in a five game play-off series. And the Tampa Bay Rays made the fifth game necessary by taking the two games in Arlington. Life doesn’t always happen like we expect or want it to. Sometimes we win when the odds are against us and sometimes we lose when we think we’re on a roll.

            That’s one of the great things about sports. It gives us such good analogies for life. What lessons can we learn about life from the past few days of baseball? Among others, here are a few.

            Where you are doesn’t matter nearly as much as what you do. We can make a mistake by giving too much credit to the externals. Sure a supportive crowd can be helpful but the game is played on the field. Do your job. Enjoy the cheers when they’re behind you. Endure the jeers when they’re in your face. But do your job.

            Take advantage of opportunities. In Tuesday night’s game, not only did Cliff Lee pitch an outstanding game, the Rangers put runs on the board partly because of smart base running. They took chances. They paid attention when the other guys were not. They made things happen. A man who doesn’t take advantage of opportunities seldom accomplishes anything. He hems, haws and hesitates until life has passed him by.

            When you do lose you don’t let it keep you down. We saw this in both the Rangers and the Rays. We will not always win. We will not always succeed. One of the more interesting things to me about this NFL season is that no team is undefeated only 5 weeks in. Sure, we’d like to win them all but we probably will not. So the sooner you can get rid of the idealism of the perfect season or the perfect life the sooner you can give yourself to the task at hand.

            No strategy is fool-proof. Try as hard as we might we’ll face our share of curve balls and bad bounces. We’ll strike out a lot and commit our share of errors. But you keep moving forward. Don’t rest on your success and don’t give in to your failures. And, if God grants it, you’ll live to play another day.

 Do you not know that those who run in a race all run, but only one receives the prize? Run in such a way that you may win. (1 Cor.9:24)

Brad Fry

Published in: on October 13, 2010 at 2:45 pm  Comments (2)  
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