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Devotion of the Week

Devotion of the Week

Fresno State quarterback and Heisman Trophy hopeful Derek Carr said his faith in Christ was the No. 1 thing in his life. “You can ask anyone who knows me, that’s the first thing they should tell you, and if they don’t, then I’m not doing the right thing,” he said. “Derek Carr is not the Fresno State quarterback. First of all, he’s a Christian and then he’s the Fresno State quarterback; that is what’s the most important thing to me, to be noticed as a Christian first and a quarterback second...”

The 2012 St. Louis Cardinals baseball team exhibited unusual power. Five players: Carlos Beltran, Matt Holliday, Allen Craig, Yadier Molina and David Freese each hit 20 or more home runs. This had never happened in franchise history. They made it to the postseason, winning the wild card playoff and division series. They were up 3 games to 1 in the National League Championship Series against the San Francisco Giants until San Francisco’s excellent pitching took over...

Being able to play in the NBA is the biggest privilege anyone could ever ask for, but for me it is the greatest opportunity I have been given to spread the Gospel to people. There are many people who look up to me, figuratively and physically, and I know I can have an impact on them. My goal every day is to handle myself in a Gospel-centered manner and be able to show my faith to people through my actions. When I get the opportunity, there is no greater joy than to be able to share the Gospel with someone. The forgiveness that I have been able to receive through Christ is the greatest gift I have ever received in my life, and I love being able to help others be able to receive that gift, or just simply give them encouragement in their faith. There are challenges along the way, but I wouldn’t give up that gift for any challenge, difficulty or anything the world can offer...

The success of the 2013 Pittsburgh Pirates, who broke a 20-year losing streak and made the playoffs, began because Pittsburgh Manager Clint Hurdle wanted to make a difference by choosing something other than what people told him to do. Hurdle recounted his decision to Sports Spectrum in the 2013 Spring issue. “Everyone told me that I had to go to New York,” recalls Hurdle, who says that people advised him to take that job because of his connection with the Mets as a player and minor league manager...

I remember going to my first Indiana Pacers game at Market Square Arena with my father in first grade. The Pacers were playing the Hawks, and we sat up in the rafters, and I wouldn’t trade it for anything. I don’t even remember if the Pacers won; in fact, I think they lost. But the experience is what I remember. I had bugged my dad for so long to go to a game, and just being there, watching Reggie Miller, wearing my No. 31 Miller jersey and pinstripe shorts, and sitting next to my dad was enough. The experience was enough...

On January 9, 1977, Super Bowl XI was played between Oakland and Minnesota. Early in the game, Oakland moved into Minnesota’s red zone, but came away with only a field goal. John Madden, the Raiders head coach, was frustrated. Kenny Stabler, the Raiders quarterback, said, “Don’t worry, Coach. There’s plenty more where that came from.” He was right. With the Raiders’ line opening huge holes for Clarence Davis and Mark Van Eegham, while allowing Stabler time to find Fred Biletinikoff, Cliff Branch and Dave Casper, the Raiders won easily 32-14...

I was talking to my sister about her conference tennis match on the phone this year. She was nervous and anxious, and she needed some comfort. I told her, “Carrie, nobody works harder than you. Nobody trains better. Nobody takes more lessons. There’s nothing else you can do. Enter the match knowing that. And be comforted by that. What happens will play out, but know you’ve done everything...”

Marshall beat Xavier 15-13 on Sept. 25, 1971, in a college football game. Nothing about that seems spectacular, noteworthy or would make anyone have goose bumps—except a Marshall fan or someone who knows college football history. That game was memorable and spectacular, not because Marshall quarterback Reggie Oliver threw a touchdown pass...

In the 1970’s the Pittsburgh Steelers won four Super Bowls. Part of the reason was that their offensive front four could all bench press 500 pounds. Their superior strength protected Terry Bradshaw well and opened huge holes for Franco Harris and Rocky Bleier. The weight room is a vital part of athletic programs today in professional, college and even high school sports. Strength training pays off in football, basketball, and other sports as well...

Doug Flutie was someone who didn’t fit the prototypical quarterback. He only stood 5-feet, 9 inches tall, but he had a strong arm, a huge heart and a belief that his team could win. On Nov. 23, 1984, with six seconds left on the clock, and Flutie’s Boston College team trailing the defending national champion Miami Hurricanes, fans saw all of Flutie’s qualities and more...

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