Me with my lovely wife, Kathy:

Monday, July 27, 2009

Some unasked for coaching for Michael Vick:

I'm a casual football fan--at best.
I don't keep up with the scores, who's playing what position, and there are aspects of the game I don't understand. OK, guys, go ahead, make fun of me. From time to time something about the game will get my attention, though. It was a long time ago, but being a kid from the suburbs of the Windy City, I enjoyed the Bears big run--Refrigerator Perry, Walter Peyton, Jim McMahon, Mike Singletary, and of course Iron Mike Ditka became fairly familiar names to me.
I follow college football even less than NFL, but when Michael Vick played for Virginia Tech, I would watch whenever I could. I was in awe. When he went to the NFL I figured he would get clobbered, broken up, crippled, but he continued some of the same escape-artist magic. Instead of being brought down by linebackers, and defensive-linemen, he became a victim of stupidity, arrogance, immaturity and just plain old-fashioned sin.
I just heard that the NFL commissioner has cleared Vick to play.
If you happen to see Michael at 7-11 please pass this on to him.

Michael, I read shortly after your arrest that you professed to trust the Lord Jesus Christ as Savior. I sincerely hope that is true. A lot of people will tell you that your sins can't be forgiven--or at least can't be forgiven that easily. Not so. Moses, David, Mary Magdalene, the woman taken in adultery, the thief on the cross, Peter, and Paul all give testimony to the contrary. Yes God forgives those who trust Christ. (John 3:16, Romans 10:9-13, and Ephesians 2:8-10)
Know that we are not forgiven because we change. We change because we are forgiven. Michael, if you have trusted Christ you don't want to be what you once were--the you that drove your life to the tragedy it became.
I figure you struggle. I know I do. The Apostle Paul recorded his conflict in Romans 7. Know that God has given us the resources for victory. Prayer, God's word, the support of God's people. The ability to build new Godly habits to replace the old wrong ones.
There is no doubt that you have an incredible gift. At least you had one. I know you desperately hope that you still do. I don't know you, but I hope you can still elude defenders and throw and run like you did. If you are sincere in your statements that you have changed, I hope someone gives you a chance. Know that if someone gives you a chance, that it is a gift and that it is chance. Nobody owes you anything. You are trying to reenter a profession that depends on people buying tickets and tuning in. Really you need not just one person to give you a chance, but a few million. If we do, don't make us regret it.
Maybe some people who read this will chime in with some thoughts of their own, but let me share with you some thoughts, not just for you, but for all of us. You see the Bible says that not just football stars, but all of us have received a gift from God. (See James 1:17)
I, and maybe some others, will share some specifics later, but all of us need to know that if what I have is a gift from God then what I get from investing that gift, ought not to be used selfishly. 2 Corinthians 5:15.
Stay tuned.

No comments: