years ago, when the days were longer, summers took forever, reruns of andy griffith, leave it to beaver, and gomer pyle (oh, and fraggle rock) donned the wood lined tv set, and after that when lion king and aladdin ran the vcr… we would get locked outta the house after lunch, and be told… “don’t come back till dinner.”
so we’d play. wall ball, fishin, bb’s lodged in everything around the neighborhood. wonderin why the lights didn’t work on the street corner… we’d play. soccer and baseball.
for soccer, we had a tree and a hedge in the front yard to mark the goal, full soccer games, two on two. i would spend days dribbling the ball to my limit at the end of the concrete and back to the house, as far as i could hear Mom yell if she needed me. i was going to be a professional soccer player.
for baseball, picture the movie “sandlot” friends coming from all around, meeting up in the field outside our house. tennis balls and whiffle golf balls with broomsticks, thinking one day i’d be the next pete rose, carl yastrzemski or “pudge” rodriguez. i was gonna be a professional baseball player.
then came football, my dream. i’d begged for years to play… and i got the chance, sixth grade, and i stunk, on the select team, the Rebels. then came jr hi, and i was ok. then hs, and i worked out pretty hard, and i got better, then jr. year my dc., or defensive coordinator, told me i’d have a chance to play in college. and i was like WHAT? come on. then sr year after a state championship, it happened. one D1A scholarship. my chance. glory.
so i go. glory is mine. i walk out on Nebraska’s stadium for the first game of the 98 season, after they just won the national championship, and i wept. so thankful, humbled, 75k screaming fans, and they were screaming for me. redshirted. then the next year, first game against florida state on national television… all good. first start. first play, i tackle travis minor on a sweep right… glory all mine. until peter warrick runs a reverse back and forth to score on us, i play hard, but that highlight was shown until the draft that year, and my jersey is highlighted on ESPN. fun.
summer, to fall, season to season, playing against stars and tackling shawn alexander, dante culpepper, knocking down a pass from David Carr, among others. winning season, to losing season, to winning, to losing to a 1AA school, to winning a WAC championship… glory was all mine. all about me.
i stood. after all the battles, games won and lost, i stood, successful as i coulda been, fulfilling childhood dreams, in this fleshly body, and felt empty. finding the end of most of the dreams i could have had as a child about playing in front of hundreds of thousands of people and being a star on television. signing autographs and hugging babies. was funny to be the person everyone knew. “you’re avance.” ha… yeah. i am he. my name’s been plastered all over ESPN for dunce of the year, and won championships and lost to div1aa teams… I’ve missed more tackles then i’ve made, and i’m slow and white. whatup? i was like a rockstar, in a 25,000 member town. at times the king of the stage, and others the dunce of the floor…
but it was never enough. it was not until i met this God again, i was so mad at him for giving me everything i’d ever dreamed of… and not making me good enough, or capable enough? to handle the glory.
Then, one day, the One who makes the sun to rise and set every day. The One who causes the tides to rise and fall and makes the daisies to bloom, showed me what purpose means. i mean, i was good about practice and working hard. Showing up everyday to do my work, but in the end, it was all about the show… until i realized that the glory’s in the grind.
God reveals himself to those who love him and obey him. He will show himself to you if you love and obey Him. John 14.21
Meeting trouble? Coach Smith always said, “it’s never as good as it seems, never as bad as it seems, always somewhere in between.” Kindof, a humanistic version of Jeremiah 29.11.
God’s got a plan, in the end. Trust the practice. Trust the daily grind is there to get you to the goal. For the shiny’s not shiny unless you know dirt. True. But God stands alone, set apart. Holy. Daily there, grinding away for your salvation, and He doesn’t lose. He calls, He justifies, He glorifies.
You ain’t gotta like it, you’re commanded to, but if you’ll just do it, i guarantee ya, you’ll love it. He’s good. and way better at the grind then you could ever imagine being.
It’s worth it brother. Grind it out, He does, and did.
ok, so on top of this… i go to crooked tree to get coffee tonight, and order an americano… the espresso grinder was broken, tools out, etc… so i get a coffee, “dark, medium, please” and as i was drinkin… the coffee was dec., i would say i missed the expresso though.
i would say, yet again… “the glory’s in the grind.” glory’s in the grind.