Billy's Blog
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August 1, 2016, 11:45 AM

It's been a good day

Jim Valvano was the long time basketball coach of North Carolina State. His team won the 1983 national championship shocking the University of Houston who had two future NBA Hall of Famers on their roster, Akeem Olajuwon and Clyde Drexler. They won the game on a buzzer beater putback by Dereck Whittenburg. 

In 1993, just eight weeks before he died of bone cancer, Valvano gave a speech at the ESPY awards, a sports award show put on by ESPN. In his speech he gave this quote, “To me there are three things everyone should do every day. Number one is laugh. Number two is think -- spend some time time in thought. Number three, you should have your emotions move you to tears. If you laugh, think and cry, that's a heck of a day.” I've always loved this quote. It's such a simple thought but it is true. 

1. Laugh a little

Proverbs 17:22 says, "A cheerful heart is good medicine, but a crushed spirit dries up the bones." I've always enjoyed humor and I try to use it as much as possible. I had a man in one church I ministered to that said I was just big joke and I couldn't be taken seriously. This man was one of the most miserably negative people I've ever known. His crushed spirit had dried up his bones. We need to laugh a little more. We need to take ourselves a little less serious. We need to find some more cheer in our lives. I know there are moments to be serious and somber, and maturity is determining when humor is useful or not. Laugh at ourself. If you're like me there's plenty of material. Laugh at others. I know this may sound like strange advice, but it's ok. Laugh at life. There are some really funny things that happen. Even in the darkest of moments humor is there to lighten up the dark. 

2. Take time to think. 

In Psalms 46:10 David reminds us, "Be still and know that I am God..."

If you are anything like me you find it hard to be still. With the invention of the internet and social media it seems so hard to just be still and think. Sometimes the way I do this is with windshield time. I have an hour or 30 minutes to sit there in a car. I just turn off the radio and just let the quiet happen. I get distracted easily, but sometimes I just have really clear thoughts about life. I try to allow God to speak to me. I try to just think about what's most important right now. We need to stop and be still. We need this time. Part of the reason why there is such a thing as a mid-life crisis is people don't ever take the time to think. They just go, go, go and at age 40 they look back and wonder what they've accomplished. Stop and take the time to think about your life. 

3. Be moved

The shortest verse in the Bible is John 11:35, "Jesus wept." I loved to quote this verse when I was in Bible camp. These two words reveal a lot about Jesus. Jesus had been called by Mary and Martha to come see their sick brother, Lazarus. Jesus had delayed. He did this because of the larger purpose of bringing glory to God. Mary and Martha did not understand this. They were all very close to Jesus and they believed if he would have come earlier he could have saved Lazarus. They were right, but Jesus had a plan. Jesus ended up resurrecting Lazarus, but the pain of his friends moved him to tears. 

Some are wired to be moved to tears easily, some not so much. But we should have our emotions stirred on a frequent basis. The other day while I was out at a youth camp in Colorado a young lady came up to me. I could not remember who she was. She told me and I immediately remembered her. She began to tell me that her grandpa's dying wish was that she be baptized by me. She said she was ready for this. I hugged her tight and we had a neat moment. This really stirred my emotions. We should be people that can have emotions stirred. We should not be so cynical about life that we are calloused to the things that should move us. 

So today, I know it's Monday and I know it's raining, but if you can laugh, think and cry it's been a pretty good day. 

Have a great Monday,


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