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Friday, June 01, 2007

"I thank God everyday..."

These were the words spoken by NBA super-phenom, Lebron James, after he carried a rag-tap group of basketball misfits over and above the team favored to win this series.

When Lebron said it I believed it. And so I asked my buddy if he believed Lebron.
"'Bout what?" he asks.
"Do you really think Lebron thanks God everyday?"
"Well," he replied matter-of-factly, "It's kind of a cliche."
My buddy thinks for a few seconds and then adds, "I mean, the guy is like a machine. He should be thankful...." And then my buddy keeps going on about how much Lebron has to be thankful for: muscle, speed, power...they all kind of go together...
So, I challenge back.
"But for most NBA players it is the opposite. For most NBA players they are completely self-absorbed and self-centered." I pause and think about it, not really noticing that my buddy doesn't really care to ruminate or further speculate on the theological significance of Lebron James or any other NBA players for that matter. As I begin to realize I have lost my audience I add one more final thought: "Most NBA players come to believe that they deserve everything they have."

I don't know what your particular position is on the God question. Or who you think he is or who you think you are in relation to him. But I simply want to say that I feel very thankful at this particular moment in time. Gratitude is something I have felt little of in recent days. And this due to a wide variety of circumstances, many of which are completely unrelated to each other.

A grateful perspective transforms a person. To view everything we have as being gifted to us. That we are stewards for the Master; caretakers of the beautiful. To lose sight of this is nothing less than a catastrophe. Losing sight of gratitude and the giftedness of all things we possess and come into contact with invites darkness because the beautiful is now a thing for consumption rather than sacrament. Beauty becomes twisted and perverted.

I wish I could stay thankful for every moment, but each moment that passes seems to pull me back into a survival mode - the world seems to demand that I protect and advance myself, or else I will be completely lost to the world. What does it mean to pour out my life as a drink offering? Or to give my life as a sacrifice for many? In some way it is connected to whether I am grateful and thankful caregiver.


Dawn said...

My first thought when I read that quotation was...gosh, I don't thank God everyday. I probably ask for something everyday though. :/

I had a friend who would get all up in arms whenever an athlete thanked God for their accomplishments. She said they were being insincere and cliche. Even after watching a video that highlighted an Olympian's deep faith, she got all pissy when that same athlete thanked God.

I wonder how many people automatically assume hypocrisy when they hear that phrase.

ktismatics said...

On the other hand... a couple recent blogposts extolling resentment (the May 31 post) and here (the May 29 post).

ktismatics said...

Again there's something funny about links -- they work in preview mode but not when I post. Still, both links are there: the first begins with "the," the second with "here."