Welcome to Players and Prayers

In these crazy days we currently live in, I feel led by the Lord to start a blog. I love the Bible, God’s word to us and for us. The Bible to me is a snapshot of how we should live our lives from the designer of everything. I love sports. It can bring so many feelings and passions in a three-hour window, you may feel the need to shower before and after the game. I am going to do my best as God leads to tie in current sports events with Bible passages I am studying. My goal is never to offend – you see enough of that on TV – but to encourage you in these trying times. So I am off to the races…

An incredible college football story happened over the weekend. The USC football team won a home game over Western Michigan. That was not remarkable in the least. What was truly astounding was Jake Olson, blind since about 12 years old, was the long snapper on the final extra point try.  As he followed his teammates out on the field, the crowd really started to stir in anticipation.  A perfect snap, a perfect conversion, and on queue not a dry eye in the house. As a kid, Jake longed to do this some day. Saturday, USC made it happen for Jake, and a huge kudos to Western Michigan’s coach telling his players not to rush the kicker.  Jake was so genuine and the moment so surreal, it made me think about the day, somewhere in the distant future, where Jake could see again.  If you have not seen this video please watch it on YouTube when you get a chance, you can thank me later.

I was instantly reminded of a passage in the Bible from the book of Mark chapter ten. There was a beggar named Bartimaeus. Nobody knows how long he had been blind, but it was probably all his life. As he heard the news that Jesus was coming his way, he called out to him, “Jesus, Son of David, have mercy on me.” I am sure he had many naysayers tell him that Jesus was never going to stop and what’s the point of trying. Your just one lonely voice in a huge crowd.  This did not stop him, or Jake Olson for that matter.  Can you imagine how Bartimaeus felt when one of the followers in the crowd came to him and said, “Cheer up! On your feet! Jesus is calling you!”

I think Jake had this exact feeling on Saturday. For many people, this may have been a trivial football game, but not for Jake. This was a game changer. For Bartimaeus this was going to be another day begging for food and asking for help around the city. But this day, in both stories, went from the ordinary to extraordinary. Great things happen when people get together for the good of a person, and great things happen when Jesus gets involved. Bartimaeus did receive his sight in the Bible story. I pray Jake receives his sight in his lifetime, and a cure is found. Either way my teary eyes were wide open, and glued to the TV.  I mumbled to myself way to go Jake, you would have to be blind to miss this heart warming story, and someday Jake, you won’t be. 

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