When I became a father, first of two girls, I had to do a lot of praying because I did not have a clue what to do. However, when my son arrived, I had already been talking to him in his mother’s tummy for several months. I had carefully studied the positive effect of tummy talk and everyone witnessed it working the day he was born. When the nurses brought him into the room crying very seriously about something, I took him in my arms and asked him “What’s the matter, Buddy?” He looked up at me and immediately calmed right down. Everyone in the room said “Aw”!
As my son grew older, he pretty much loved what most boys love. When he became a teenager, my dad and I poured a large concrete trapezoid-shaped basketball pad against our mini barn. My son spent hours of his spare time shooting baskets and played JV through Varsity Basketball at the Christian school my children attended. He eventually became the team captain and succeeded in scoring over 1000 points during his time there. I never missed one of my son’s games unless the northeast winter weather prevented it. I often listened to my son talk to his friends and on everyone’s mind was the dream of one day playing in the NBA. Michael Jordan of the Chicago Bulls was Buddy’s biggest superstar and number 23 was on his jersey!
It was during my son’s childhood that I developed a radio broadcast for teens called Teen Talk Radio. It became part of a syndicated network covering a large percentage of the more densely populated northeast. This ministry gave me the opportunity to travel to large ministry venues and interview some of the top Christian artists and athletes. As I interviewed some of these NBA and NFL stars, I found out that making it into professional sports is a one-in-a-million shot. In most cases if professional teams were not sending out talent scouts to observe a person’s outstanding abilities at a very young age then there was virtually no chance for the average young person, even with notable local talent, to make it into professional sports.
I will never forget the day that after months of prayer in preparation I met my son coming home from school one afternoon. I said, “Bud, we need to talk!” He asked, “About what Dad?” I responded, “Basketball, and what you are going to do for the rest of your life.” “Ok” he said, “What did you want to say?” I answered, “Buddy, you will never ever be a professional basketball player!” Tears filled his eyes, although he was not a kid who was given to crying. I’ll never forget his angry response, “Dad, why would you tell me that?” My reply was “Because I know some things, Bud. I know it is your dream, but it’s just the way the professional sports world works!”
He never said another word to me about that, but he played hard, had a wonderful senior year and did an excellent job as team captain. The next year he started attending a local college and began to pursue his second love of military operations and joined the ROTC. He went on to excel in all his classes and ended up graduating four years later with both academic and ROTC honors. He later earned the distinction of being an Army Ranger and today my son is a Captain in the United States Army. He is a shining example of what young people can do when they need to go through the painful process of changing their dreams and discovering what God may have had waiting for them all along. It would be impossible for me to admire him more than I do for what he has accomplished. His two sisters are both schoolteachers and are shining leaders as well. The joys and the pains of parenting these three awesome children have all been so totally rewarding! Always remember, sometimes you may have to change your dreams, but a better dream will then be able to grow up in its place! Remember what is promised in Romans 8:28.