If you missed the Focus on the Family broadcast with Pete Maravich, it’s must listening. Whether or not you’re a basketball fan, the story of “Pistol Pete” is one you’ll want to hear. At four years of age, Pete began dribbling his way into becoming one of the greatest basketball players of all time. Over the years, Pete set more than 40 NCAA records, was featured on five Sports Illustrated magazine covers, played in five NBA All-Star game and was ultimately inducted into the Hall of Fame.
Author, speaker, and parenting coach, Tedd Tripp, is perhaps best known for his book, Shepherding a Child’s Heart. In chapter eight of his latest book, Instructing a Child’s Heart, I love the emphasis that Tedd places on helping our children to be dazzled by God. He believes all of us have been uniquely created for worship, and worship of God occurs almost as a reflex whenever we’re dazzled by His glory.
Personally, I’m dazzled whenever I witness an awesome sunset, one of God’s colorful creatures, or when I’m standing in the presence of a massive waterfall.
You don’t need me to tell you that the temperatures are dropping and the sun setting earlier now that Daylight Savings time has kicked in. And, I’m sure you’ve figured out by now that with colder temps and darkness settling much earlier, our kids have less incentive to remain outdoors to play. Which, of course, means they’re now spending more time in the house.
Why, then, am I stating the obvious?
Because as we head into the winter, house-bound kids will spend more time watching television than engaging in outdoor activities.
I’d like to offer some perspective on the election of Barack Obama. While I happen to have a deep difference of opinion with him regarding the sanctity of human life, traditional marriage, and religious freedoms among other things, I’d like to take a stab at explaining why the election of America’s first black president is important for our nation.
The roots of what I’m about to say can be traced back to my first visit to South Africa back in 1991.
Last week I was speaking to a group of Focus on the Family friends in Michigan. At the end of most events I have the time to linger with the guests. I enjoy getting to meet and spend one-on-one time listening to their stories.
Among those in attendance was a women named Glenda who came over to shake my hand. Glenda told me how her husband, Fred, had read my autobiography Finding Home almost exactly one year ago to the day.
October 14, 1978 is a date forever etched upon my mind. I was seventeen at the time living in Yucca Valley, California. The Village People had just burst onto the music scene with their hit single “Y.M.C.A.” while the Bee Gees were topping the charts with “Stayin’ Alive.” That, of course, is not why this date stands out in my memory after thirty years.
This particular morning I was relaxing at home watching a major league playoff game on television when a loud racket outside of the window caught my attention.
Back in 1985, when I was still single, I had an interesting experience during a church service. In the middle of his sermon, the pastor stopped preaching, walked right up to me and said, “I have a word from the Lord for you. I believe God has your mate picked out for you, and she’s going to have a heart for the things of God. She’ll be your crown.”
Needless to say, I was a bit taken aback.
I’m a blessed man. My job allows me to meet incredible people and taste different slices of life that I might not otherwise have experienced. As previously reported, I’ve enjoyed the thrill of watching a NASCAR race from the best seat in the house–on pit road. I’ve hit the road on the back of a Harley with friends. And I had the chance of a lifetime to watch a Boston Red Sox baseball game at Fenway Park.
Last week best selling author Anne Rice was a guest on the Focus on the Family broadcast. For two days she and Dr. James Dobson had a conversation about her spiritual journey from “an unhappy atheist,” as Anne described herself, to a follower of Christ in 1998. If you missed these programs,you’ll want to carve out some time to hear Anne speak about the awesome way that God changed her heart.
I should point out that not everyone who heard these programs was pleased that Anne was on the Focus broadcast.
Earlier this year I mentioned a powerful little booklet by Charles Hummel entitled, The Tyranny of the Urgent. Hummel artfully describes the tension between two contestants which vie for our time: the urgent things and the important things. He argues that the urgent things–such as the demands at the office, “the winds of other people’s demands,” or even our own “inner compulsions”–typically trump the things which are important, like regular dates with our spouse, personal solitude, exercise, or devotions.