The Great One - if you’re a Hockey fan, there is no doubt who that is. If you’ve lived on a desert island for 40 years or been in a coma (yes, it is possible A guy in Britain was not 40 years in a coma but 17 years!) or just not a fan - you would be thinking that the Great One could be - Alexander if your were Greek, Antiochus if you lived in Rome, Elvis, Arnold Palmer, Frank Sinatra, The Beatles, Mozart, Joan of Ark, Muhammed Ali, take your pick. The description of great is given by others who have voiced their opinion about someone else. It could be that they have an educated opinion or an emotional one or an eccentric view or only trying to encourage someone - you’re great, you’re the best.
Well. the picture tells the story that Wayne Gretzky was a smart player. He didn’t chase around doing more than he needed and the result was - from a complete amateur perspective - the highest scorer in history and seemed to get through his career with very few injuries. I am aware that my limited knowledge will inflame some because he had, I believe, enforcers to protect him. They were there to protect him during the game - who was there to protect him in life, when he was on the outside? His family, his Dad, his agent, his best friends. Yes, I am sure that all of those were there as they were able.
By now, you know that this forum is focused on the life which surrounds the inmate on the inside, the offender exposed to the raw outside. We, in After Care, are dedicated to support those who are called to minister to irrespective of whether we are their friends or that we even like them. Who takes care of us? That we are able to stay strong and blessed, able to meet the needs? There is a scripture that hit me between the eyes a few years ago. I was stunned that the scripture could actually say this - in Psalm 18 v 35 - God stooped down to make us great!! Wow! It still means so much to me now. Unlike our loyal and faithful family, friends, fellow sportsmen, He is able to look after us 24/7. If we are not feeling great, that is not God’s fault, He has given us everything that pertains to life and Godliness (2 Peter 1 v 3).
Can we believe that? Dare we? There is a powerful truth at the root of this - we have the resources, ability, purpose, direction to get back to a place of greatness, again. It doesn’t mean that we will be great in the eyes of all those around us. Is that really important? Surely, the key factor is whether WE FEEL great. The get up in the morning feeling that says “Good morning, Lord” and not “Good Lord, it’s morning!” Isn’t that the important part, do we feel good about life? If you are in a good place that makes all the difference to our view of circumstances. If Wayne Gretzky didn’t feel too good about playing or he was a bit too concerned about the size or the nasty look from an opponent because of something that he may have done or said to him in the last game - do you think he would be successful?
It is very easy to reflect on the past and decide not to step out with a brighter perspective. Double that issue up with being surrounded with negative people feeling the same way and talking negative thoughts. Not a good scenario. Notice in Gretsky’s comment - I go to where it is not where it has been. Concentrate on the future, go forward with the strength of knowing that you are directed by the Creator to be Great! Not to defeat everyone in front of you but to positively influence your future by sowing seeds of growth, of life, of kindness, of encouragement.
Now doesn’t that sound great…?