Tuesday, March 09, 2010

Are You Uncommon?

Tony Dungy is. And the retired Super Bowl winning coach and now best-selling author was in Toledo this week talking to high school students [and others in the bleachers like me] about what it means to live a life of significance in a culture that is offering few positive role models. Uncommon is an easy read that reveals lessons on achieving significance that the coach has learned from his remarkable parents, his athletic and coaching career, his mentors, and his journey with God. My fave part of his presentation was the Q&A where he described how he has been mentoring Michael Vick and how he decided long ago to unashamedly live his faith even on the sidelines, and how no amount of money could coax him back into football doing what he used to instead of dong what he's doing now: talking to everyone and anyone about living the uncommon life of faith in an often faithless world.

While Joe Gibbs is still my fave coach of all time, Tony is a close second. I recommend this book as a graduation gift for boys and girls this year!!! Maybe you could write on the inside: "Dear BLANK, be uncommon!!!"


Gentle Persuasion by Joe Aldrich said...

Very impressive description of Michael Vick as a "rehabilitated dog killer" as opposed to "convicted dog fighter," "gifted but troubled athlete," "troubled NFL quarterback," etc. Why don't we do away with the labels. They aren't necessary. Besides, at this point everybody already who Micheal Vick is (NFL fan or not), and they already have decided whether they will support or deride him. No one needs one more person to remind us how "evil" he is. How about this for a title "human" or "sinner" like you and me. Stop the hate. Spread the love. If it's that hard, just try to see Vick as if he were Zaccheaus (this is a Christian blog right?), or Mary Magdelene, or the woman at the well. If Jesus could love them (and him) surely his followers can do without labeling them "dog killer" just so the rest of the world won't forget. Call it nit-picking-I call it forgiveness and grace-unmerited favor. That is all.

Mike Fortune said...

Great take Joe. Reminds me of something Brennan Manning says in The Ragamuffin Gospel p.143. "That whenever Mark, Luke, or John mention the apostles, they call the author of the first Gospel either Levi or Matthew. But in his own Gospel, he always refers to himself as 'Matthew the publican' never wanting to forget who he was and always wanting to remember how low Jesus stooped to pick him up."

We are publicans just like Matthew. So I suppose we should drop the labels and let those wearing them decide how they choose to be identified.