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Humble Beginnings

Every life is like a book with a beginning, middle and end.  However, sometimes portions of life doesn’t make sense until insight is provided from the future.  As for me, its clear that I started from humble beginnings.  Born with a severe speech impediment, life didn’t seem very fair.  In addition, I was accident prone, crashing face first into the pavement on my bike, breaking my leg in two pieces after jumping from an above ground pool and having the tip of my pinky finger caught in a car door.  These events summed up my early days on earth.

Whoever exalts himself will be humbled, and whoever humbles himself will be exalted, Matthew 23:12.

However, little did I know that all these things likely occurred to keep me from becoming full of myself.  As my athletic talents began to blossom, strange occurrences immediately followed crowning moments.  Appendicitis, a complete ligament tear and head on collision prevented me from becoming a prideful person.  Looking back, perhaps my analysis is incorrect, but something in my soul makes me believe these trials kept me humble.  Furthermore, this experience helped me realize that my talents are on loan from God.

But he gives more grace. Therefore it says, “God opposes the proud, but gives grace to the humble,” James 4:6.

Like me, Jesus also came from humble beginnings.  When his future father, Joseph, was about to divorce Mary, God intervened.  Yet, Jesus was born into poverty, forced to work hard as a carpenter to make a living.  Growing up in Nazareth, a town with a terrible reputation, Jesus had a lot to overcome.  Nonetheless, when the appointed time arrived, God the Father raised his Son up to find favor on earth.  May those of you enduring hard times currently, remember the promise of humility, that those who are humbled will be lifted up!

by Jay Mankus

Singing the Detroit Blues

In an article by , she uses an old Bill Gates quote for her title, “life isn’t fair, get used to it!”  While most parents have passed on this message to their children, amidst life’s storms its hard to accept this reality.  During a scene from Remember the Titans, the fix was in as officials threw a penalty on almost every play earlier in the first quarter against the Titans.  Unwilling to see his team go down in defeat, defensive coordinator Bill Yoast, played by Will Patton, threatens to go to the local News Papers if the game isn’t called fair during a timeout.

Unfortunately, Detroit Lions fans didn’t have Coach Yoast on their sidelines as a 5 minute portion of the 4th Quarter in Sunday’s NFL game at Dallas verse the Cowboys had a similar feel.  On a 3rd down and 1 on the Cowboys side of the field, officials called a pass interference on the defense, giving the ball in field goal range at worse for Detroit.  Without any warning, the call was reversed after it was announced leaving Detroit Lions players scratching their heads.  Beside this non call, Cowboys wide receiver Dez Bryant ran halfway on to the field, without a helmet, yelling at the official who threw the flag.  According to the rules, this too should have been a penalty, making it first down for the Lions inside the Cowboys 20 yard line.  However, officials succumb peer pressure, causing citizens of Detroit to start singing the blues.

 The grass withers and the flowers fall, but the word of our God endures forever. – Isaiah 40:8

Although the world is inconsistent, especially in regards to sports officiating, the Bible remains firm.  Deuteronomy 4:2 and Revelation 22:18 continues to warn its readers, past and present, about adding and subtracting from this Holy Book.  I’m not sure what the future holds, but justice was not carried out today on a gridiron in Texas.  In the end, God is the ultimate judge who will hold individuals accountable for their actions, Matthew 12:36.  As for Lions fans, may God provide some type of comfort in the near future so today’s bitter taste of defeat will be removed.

by Jay Mankus