THE SHEPHERD’S CORNER
As some of you knew, one of the men that I admire is John Wooden, the legendary basketball coach that led UCLA Bruins to 10 national championships during the 1960s-1970s. This month marks the tenth anniversary of his passing. His leadership and wisdom have reverberated far beyond the basketball court he stepped on. The life that this man of God led has been an inspiration to many.
Recently his son was interviewed about his father. He said no movie producer was interested in making a movie out of his father’s life because his life was “boring.” Yes, all the 99 years God gave him were void of drama and sensation; only filled with faithfulness and integrity. He gave his life to God, to his family, and to his work. His last annual salary in 1970s was only $32.500; his last home was a simple condominium; his last car was a 15-year old Ford Taurus.
For ten years on the 21st day of every month after the passing of his wife he wrote a letter to her. Those letters piled up on the side of the bed where she used to sleep, next to him. For ten years after the passing of his wife, he refused to attend the Final Four Game, the game he used to attend with her. And when UCLA wanted to name its court after him, he told them to include her name and that her name be put first; hence, the Nell and John Wooden Court. But, in the eyes of the world this kind of life is boring—no drama.
In 2 Corinthians 3:3, Paul says, “You show that you are a letter from Christ, the result of our ministry, written not with ink but with the Spirit of the living God, not on tablets of stone but on tablets of human hearts.” Yes, we are letters from Christ to those around us, read by everyone. John Wooden was also a letter from Christ, read by everyone around him. Boring to some but blessing to most.