Yesterday I had the chance to sit and listen to someone talk who has been an inspiration to millions the world over. I won’t name any names but I will leave you to guess for yourself who it is.
Sure, he has his critics. Everyone does. You have yours. I have mine. He has his.
But that does not seem to matter to him.
You can’t. Of course you can’t. There’s no way he can….There were so many people that said he could not do what he set out to do. And he said not to pay attention to the “people that say you can’t, because those are the people who never could.”
If you have a passion, and you have a dream, and someone dares to tell you that there’s no way you could ever do that…
maybe they are the ones that need to evaluate who has their priorities straight.
You can if you will…you won’t if you can’t.
He may be famous the world over…
but it has not changed him. He’s genuine. He’s real. He has his faults, his quirks, he has his strengths, he’s competitive, he’s funny, he has a way of telling stories that makes everyone laugh…he has a passion for what he does…
And he said, that in the end, he wanted his legacy to be known as “someone that’s made an impact on kids’ lives.”
That’s how he wants to have an impact. In the end, will all of the other stuff that keeps the news in a frenzy about him really matter?
No. In the end, what matters is that some little child who was brought to a Philippine orphanage in a small cardboard box was gathered into the arms of someone who loved her, was given food to eat, a special home to live in, a chance to live life like a child should.
Before her only chance was a small cardboard box…Now opportunities for her have no limit…they soar sky high with possibilities!
He finished by saying, “You never know when you’re in your fourth quarter, when you’re in your two-minute drill, so let’s try to finish strong now.”
For a gal who had an uncle play on NFL defense …touchdown! This really hits it home for me.
My uncle is a strong person…he’s a strong person physically, but he’s also a strong person within as well.
Recently my uncle’s brother died.
My uncle is grieving.
He spoke quieter…the twinkle in his eye was no longer there….when I last went to see him….
he was missing the brother who played alongside both him and another brother on defense and helped lead their college team (ironically my school’s hated rivals) to the National Championship two years in a row…his brother has scores of honors to his credit…first round draft pick of Tampa Bay Bucs…six-time All Pro…NFL hall of fame…etc etc…
But to my uncle, this man is the brother stood alongside him not only on the field but off the field…he is the dearly-loved little brother who suddenly passed away…and who my uncle is missing deeply…
….but he still kindly asked me what was in the works in my life for next fall. My uncle is such a strong person.
So is Mr. Speaker.
Whoever you may be, you can be a strong person!
And by strong I don’t mean bullying and trying to control everyone in your pathway (remember, true strength may bring about power, but power does not bring about true strength), I mean strength as in…
knowing you have weaknesses but that you are trying to do the right thing…making a difference in the lives of those around you…
being secure and satisfied in who you are…and that means being genuine, being real. A fake person is like someone who is caked in stage makeup, you’re left wondering whose really underneath????????????
By this time, some of you are probably guessing the man behind the words.
Go ahead and try! You’re probably right.
Whether you like him or not, no one can argue that what he said is not important to all of us. It is! How are we making an impact? What if this is your two minute drill?
Was it awesome to sit there and hear him speak, candidly, about his life, his experiences, his beliefs, his passion for what he does? Yup, sure was!
I was inspired by his stories…his words…his life…
Make someone else in your life inspired by yours.
Around here that is a major accomplishment not to be taken lightly. How about shooting off some fireworks?
Want to take a peek out of the car window yesterday evening?
Look at the colors in that sky. Wow! (Reminder: After every sunset comes a sunrise.)
This is what I saw when I walked outside today.
Have I told you I LOVE the mountains?
The mountains rise majestically into the sky, solid as rock, powerful, immovable, full of steady strength, the kind of supernatural strength that is uncommon today.
Nothing can move them. They are there to stay.
The kind of strength that gives us comfort.
As humans, we are unfamiliar with that kind of steady dedication.
But as humans, we crave it.
Be a mountain in someone else’s life. And by that, I mean, be strong and be dependable. Be the person someone else can trust to always be there beyond a shadow of doubt. There just might be someone who is counting on you.
Be the person someone else can feel safe with.
There might be someone who is hurting deeply, who is worse than depressed, and you can give them a reason to continue believing in humanity.
There might be somebody who needs to hold onto you because you are the only rock left in their life.
To them, you are a mighty mountain of supernatural strength.
Hold onto them. Now. Give them a reason to believe.
Give them a reason to hope.
You may not ever know what lives you may have saved or changed, simply by living your life every day as a strong steady person in whom others can believe.
There’s scenery behind me, like you wouldn’t believe.
Actually, if you were here, you would probably be telling me I’m looking in the wrong direction. We’ll head on out that way tomorrow.
I’ll leave you in suspense.
Meanwhile, I’ll get some rest.
a very exhausted M.E.
P.S. Is it any wonder that David once wrote, ”Be thou my strong habitation, whereunto I may continually resort: thou hast given commandment to save me; for thou art my rock and my fortress.” He wrote that about his God. It is a comforting thought.
Have been reading Joseph.
He was the unpopular younger brother. The best looking in the family. His father’s favorite. The dreamer of dreams in which he was the recipient of family homage. His ten brothers were eaten with jealousy. They had nothing good to say to him.
They threw him in a pit to die. Then they sold him to be a slave.
He was taken to Egypt, the metropolis of the world at the time.
And a heathen place to live.
And Joseph was only seventeen.
He was made a slave of the influential Potipher. He was so good and capable, that he was made second in command.
He was all alone in the worship of his God.
He faced the greatest of all temptations for a young man and said NO.
The woman went after him day after day.
And still he said NO.
Potipher’s wife raged at her unsuccess. She made Joseph pay for his refusal.
He could have saved his reputation, but instead he saved his character.
He was thrown in prison. While in prison he stayed busy serving the prisoners.
He interpreted correctly the dream of a prisoner who then went to live a life of prosperity while he stayed trapped down in prison.
Instead of sitting down and asking “why?” he stays busy with what needs to be done.
In the palace, Pharoah dreams two dreams that trouble him. Suddenly the baker remembers, “Oh yeah, remember that one guy who interpreted my dream?” He informs the Pharoah, who promptly sends for Joseph.
Joseph is down in the dungeon, taking care of the prisoners, making himself useful, never dreaming that up above, God is playing out his miraculous plan.
The prison doors creak open. The heavy tread of the guards echo along the dark tunnels. The Pharoah wants Joseph.
And Joseph is ready for destiny.
Before the Pharoah ever tells him his dreams, Joseph lets him know who is really in charge here. His God.
Joseph interprets the dreams, but he doesn’t just stop there. He also has a plan full of good, common sense on how the Pharoah should take care of the horrible famine that is looming ahead.
The Pharoah puts him in charge. Wow! Wherever this guy is, he always seems to be put in charge!
Joseph sets about executing his mastermind of a plan. There’s a wedding as well. The Pharoah suggests that he marry the chief priest’s daughter. Before the famine begins the two are the proud parents of two boys. I’m pretty sure this guy made a pretty good husband!
The famine spreads. Everywhere there is hunger. Except Egypt, a land bursting with plenty, saved under the careful, protecting hand of Zaphnath-paaneah, alias Joseph.
The famine reaches every corner of the world. One day, ten men-guant, skinny from hunger, tired, dusty, weary from traveling- enter the city gates and stand in line to beg food from the great second-in-command of the Pharoah.
They crouch down, begging humbly that they could have food for their starving wives and children.
And Joseph looks into the faces of ten men who once sold him to be a slave. His brothers.
At that moment, he was the second most powerful man in the world.
Imagine if you were in Joseph’s shoes. What would you do?
They don’t know him, but he knows them. He wonders what they are like now. So he tests them, to see if they have changed. He handles it in typical Joseph-like fashion.
These are ten very different men from the ten who threw him inside the deep, dark, pit and ignored his cries for help. They respond differently. Long lives have been filled with lessons that they have learned, the hard way.
Joseph tries them until he can handle it no longer.
He announces, “I am Joseph!”
Can you imagine the reaction in that room to that announcement?
They were afraid. They should have been.
Can you imagine their feelings as they approach their father’s tent? Oh what news do they have to tell! News that no sane person would be crazy enough to believe.
News that they had to provide proof for before their father would ever believe them.
Joseph has forgiven them. He will protect them, as he is protecting everyone else. They will be safe with him. They pack up and move to the foreign land of Egypt.
Wherever Joseph is everyone rallies around him like he’s a rock.
Because he is. He is strong, and steady. You can trust him like you can nobody else.
He lives a life that everyone knows is powered by his mighty God.
And it began when he was only seventeen.
I started thinking,
********”How many of us today, could do what Joseph did?”*****************
Just a thought…
P.S. If you can’t read anything else this week, read Genesis 39 through Genesis 41. This is the story of Joseph, from pit to power, who believed with all his heart that “the eyes of the Lord run to and fro about the earth, seeking a man whose heart is perfect towards Him.” You will be inspired.