What I read today;

1 Corinthians 13; Mark 1; Isaiah 29; Job 29; Judges 5; Genesis 29

On Feb 21, 1993,  Jim Valvano walked into the basketball arena at North Carolina State.  10 years earlier his 1983 team shocked the world and won a national title as biggest underdog ever.  A few years later he was fired and ostracized by the coaching community over, what the NCAA investigator called, minor NCAA violations.  He was cut off from North Carolina State and treated like a pariah.  Valvano would end up on ESPN as a college basketball announcer until he was stricken with cancer.

A few months before his death he was asked to return to NC State for the 10th anniversary of that national title.   Most of the members of that team were there, but no one knew if he would come.  His relations with the school were sour at best, and he was extremely ill.  The crowd was stunned as he walked out of the tunnel. He needed the help of his wife and a few friends to walk over to the microphone.  Valvano’s 8-minute speech left the entire crowd in tears including many who had turned on him at the end of his coaching career.

He spoke about the three things we see in 1 Corinthians 13 in today’s reading.

He talked about hope.  The idea of never giving up, no matter what.  Life will throw all sorts of things in our path.  It will kick us stomp us and never let up the pressure.  But we are called to never give up.  Not out of some sense of anger. Hope comes from the sense that the God we serve is greater than all the things thrown at us.

Valvano talked about Faith.  He spoke about having a dream and staying true to that dream.  Faith is our dream.  Faith is our belief that Jesus saved us.  He took away our sins and now wants us to live our lives for him.  Faith is that no matter how far we fall, Jesus will grab us out of the water and bring us back to shore.  Faith is the idea that God will always, always, be true to his promises.  Faith is that thing that sustains us no matter what happens to us.

Finally, Valvano talked about the love his players had for each other and the love he had for them.  Without love, our lives are incomplete, and our faith is sour.  With love, we can move mountains and change the world.  With Love of God and our fellow man, we can break even the hardest of hearts and transform people into believers in the one who showed us what true love really is.

Faith, Hope, and Love can sustain us through this entire life we live.

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