Just some early morning thoughts from me to you…
“Friendship is a sheltering tree; Oh, the joys…of friendship through my years.”
“Youth and Age (Poem)”
Samuel Taylor Coleridge
“And Jonathan made a covenant with David because he loved him as himself. Jonathan took off the robe he was wearing and gave it to David, along with his tunic, and even his sword, his bow and his belt.”
1 Samuel 18: 4 (NIV)
“And…Jonathan went to David at Horesh and helped him find strength in God.”
1 Samuel 23: 16 (NIV)
You may remember Keli McGregor.
I’ve mentioned him a number of times before. He was a dear and trusted friend who left us much too soon—at least that’s how it seemed to many of us.
Some of you may remember meeting and listening to him share with us at an Impact for Living Men’s Conference a few years ago at Idlewild Baptist Church in Tampa, Florida. I first met Keli McGregor at the University of Florida over twenty-five years ago. He was a former tight end in the National Football League, and then served as a graduate-assistant with head football coach, Galen Hall, at the University of Florida while obtaining his Master’s degree.
Keli became a dear friend—and then after earning his Masters, he went on to work with Coach Frank Broyles at the University of Arkansas as an assistant athletic director, where he spearheaded the building of their campus basketball facility named the Bud Walton Arena. He then returned home to Denver, working with the Colorado Rockies Baseball Club, leading the construction of their new stadium, Coors Field. He was eventually named the Rockies’ President.
In 2007, the Rockies made a historic year-end run—winning 21 of their last 22 games—to win the National League championship. At the winter team meetings before Spring Training began for that 2007 baseball season, Keli spoke to the coaches and team headed into the season and shared, among a number of other things, this poignant word with them—
“Now you came in here prepared to be the best baseball player in the world tomorrow, to win the championship, to hold the trophy in your hands at the end of the season—but if you have no friends or relationships—what do you have?”
After a brief pause he answered for them—“You have nothing.”
To put a slightly sharper point on what Keli shared that day, his heart exploded in April of 2010, at the age of 48, while he was on a business trip in Salt Lake City for the Colorado Rockies.
Difficult moments like that, and moments we have with family and friends, and the memories we have with those who are no longer with us, all remind us of the importance of what Keli shared with the team heading into that 2007 baseball season.
The importance of relationships.
The one we have as we share these “thoughts” together each week, and the ones you have been blessed with in your lives of precious family and friends, as well as those you are building and developing wherever God has placed you each day.
Because if in striving for success, for championships, trophies, for things, money, power, and fame—we have no relationships or friendships—then we have missed the most important part of the journey.
And as Keli’s words continue to remind us—we have nothing.
Just something to think about today and every day, and on into eternity with the relationship that is most important—that one with our Heavenly Father through His Son.
In His Name—Scott
Copyright 2016. Scott L. Whitaker. All rights reserved.