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When Life Happens--Tony Dungy (August 17)

For what will it profit a man if he gains the whole world and forfeits his soul? Or what shall a man give in return for his soul? Matthew 16:26

Tony Dungy--Super Bowl XLI winning coach with Indianapolis Colts

Tony Dungy’s football path was not an easy one. He was an undrafted quarterback out of the University of Minnesota, but later shifted to cornerback and was signed by the Pittsburgh Steelers. Years later, he became the head coach of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, and despite a successful record, was fired.

Everyone faces unexpected challenges in life. For many, these situations rock the foundation of life itself. Uncertainty arises. Doubt invades. Fear ignites. Anxiety increases. Losing a dream, a job, or something else in which you have set your hopes can unsettle the most stalwart of men.

Trials have a way of exposing character and values. Placing hope in the things of this world puts your life on extremely unstable ground. Have you noticed how society shifts constantly? What is satisfying today will be left as garbage tomorrow. As great as the game of football is, it is not a sound foundation. Hero one play, chump the next--happens all the time. Deriving your value through your play on the field will leave you disappointed. Even winning championships does not fulfill. You have to do it all over again to maintain your status.

Coach Dungy was let down in his pursuits on several occasions and quickly learned that football was not life. However, he also knew that when God is your foundation and focus, football can be a tool through which God can shape men. When you play, do it well (1 Corinthians 10:31)! Play for that audience of one and let Him use your play. When your ultimate value is God, your play is put into the proper perspective and you are freed to be all that He made you to be. Ask God to free you from settling for the world’s expectations and to empower you to be your very best you! When trials come (and they will), you then have a true foundation that can allow you to withstand the attacks!!

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