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LOCKER ROOM TALK AND LESSONS FROM FOOTBALL

David Kimball of Jericho Road

June 27, 2012

Before I say anything, allow me to readily admit that a Time Out for Women blog may not be the best place for football stories, but hear me out!  As many of you know, the four of us who comprise Jericho Road met in college.  We were pretty much your average sports-loving, ramen noodle-eating college guys who also happened to love singing and performing together.   Abe won’t brag about it, but he actually walked on and made the BYU football team.  So maybe it was just the practice squad and he never quite got that ‘Rudy’ moment, but he accomplished WAY more than any of us did with our athletic skills, so props to Abe!  And if you want a good laugh, be sure to ask Justin or Bret about the infamous intramural football practice incident.  But I digress….
I learned something during the last NFL Divisional Playoffs that I wanted to share with you. (For those of you reading this who have no idea what that means, it’s the semifinals that determine who will play in the Super Bowl.) I found it interesting that when the original 32 teams were narrowed to the final four, two of them were coached by brothers.  Jim Harbaugh coaches the Baltimore Ravens and John Harbaugh coaches the San Francisco 49ers.  For anyone to achieve that level of success in coaching is phenomenal, so for two brothers to do it in the same year is almost miraculous.  I was curious to know what type of upbringing these brothers had and wondered what could have contributed to their great success.
 
One thing really stood out: their dad. Jack Harbaugh was also a football coach who raised his sons to be focused, hard-working and confident.  Almost every night when he got home from work he would energetically shout out at his family “Who has it better than us?”  In turn his family would shout back and respond, “Nobody!!!”  This is a tradition that John Harbaugh still has with his team.  Even through tough times he can be heard shouting in the 49er locker room “Who has it better than us?” to which his team will shout back, “Nobody!!!”
 
The message is that focusing on the positive in life will help us to be the best that we can be. So often we get down about all of the stress, pressures, and frustrations we have instead of thinking of all of the good things we have going for us.  Like those football players, recognizing our blessings and appreciating the challenging opportunities we have in moments of discouragement will immediately bolster our confidence and improve our desires to work even harder and make things even better. 
 
There is not a person on this earth who doesn’t have access to the hope that Jesus Christ brings.  Every single one of us can look to the heavens with eager and bright eyes and with the confidence that Heavenly Father loves us and has a tangible plan for our happiness.  So if we’re ever tempted to focus on the negative and dwell on everything that might be going badly, hopefully we can stop ourselves, think about the good news of the gospel for a moment and then quickly ask ourselves "Who has it better than us?” 
 
Nobody.