For much of the past month, the recently concluded Winter Olympics in Sochi, Russia was my standing evening entertainment. Every night seemed to bring new feelings of excitement, joy, and pathos as great victories and near-victories, desperate losses, and human drama combined in a blur of athletic amazement. There were so many events, most in sports I have little familiarity with, that I sometimes felt swept away in the swirl. And as an organizational thinker, I believe there are some strong lessons we can derive from the games themselves.
One Olympic event this year really stood out for me. American skier Ted Ligety captured the gold medal in Men's Giant Slalom skiing. On balance, I really appreciate the Giant Slalom as an Olympic event. To me, it is the perfect combination of speed, power, grace, and precision; all in under 2 minutes flying down a mountain.
Of course, besides the Giant Slalom, there are many other types of alpine skiing events – Downhill and Slalom included. In Downhill, you have just immense speed because skiers are basically falling down the mountain straight-lined. That reality is powerful, raw, and breathtaking. On the other hand, there is the Slalom event. The Slalom is full of turns - much slower - but with the requirement for constant adjustments and precision. Both Downhill and Slalom are tremendous events. The Slalom has speeds of about 25 to 35 miles an hour, constantly turning, at the Olympic level. The Downhill sometimes hits speeds of over 90 miles an hour down the mountain! more >>
Matthew McConaughey, winner of the Academy's "Best Actor" award, gave homage to God for his victory on Sunday evening, a move that few make in acceptance speeches, according to a graphic by The Associated Press. Voices in Christian media praised his speech, arguing that it took courage.
"First off I want to thank God because that's who I look up to," McConaughey, who won the "Best Actor" award for his portrayal of AIDS patient Ron Woodruff in "Dallas Buyers Club," declared at the Academy Awards on Sunday. McConaughey added that God has "graced my life with opportunities that I know are not of my hand or any other human hand." Before thanking his wife, children, mother, and late father, the actor quoted late British Actor Charlie Laughton – "When you got God, you got a friend and that friend is you."
Dan Gainor, vice president of business and culture for the Media Research Center, argued that this speech "breaks the mold of what Hollywood's image of Christians is." According to a graphic by AP, Academy Award winners thank many people, but God is not usually on the top of their list. More frequently, they thank the Academy, their spouse, mother, father, children, and management – in that order. more >>
A Lutheran pastor from the United States who served as chaplain for some of the most notorious figures of the 20th century is the subject of a soon-to-be released book.
Henry Gerecke, a chaplain who served with the U.S. Armed Forces during World War II eventually found himself ministering to the spiritual needs of Nazi war criminals.
His story, long lost amid the major names and events of the 1940s, will be available to the public in a historical book titled, Mission at Nuremberg: An American Army Chaplain and the Trial of the Nazis. more >>
This touching shadow dance is performed at the Beaverdam Baptist Church and delivers a powerful message about love and hope. The song playing in the background - "He Will Come" - pretty much gives a broad meaning to the purpose of the dance.
The dance is very simple, yet the combination of the music and beautiful imagery comes together and sends out a very meaningful message. We feel God's presence not only when we see this video but also when we see and hear testimonies of how God has come to save, heal and redeem us all.more >>
84 year-old Tinney Davidson waves at students as they walk to and from school every day from her home in Comox, British Columbia. Her lovely greeting to the students was a tradition that started together with her husband, who sadly passed away recently.
On Valentine's Day, she received a surprise from appreciative students who invited her to their high school. In the video below, Tinney is seen being overwhelmed with joy from the beautiful surprise from the students who had come to appreciate her smiling face to and from school each day. Watch the inspiring story below:more >>
Imagine waking up every morning with no arms and doing what you do each morning like that. For most it would be very hard to live with. Bur, for Richie Parker it never stopped him from reaching his dreams. He currently works for one of NASCARs most successful driving teams, Hendrick Motorsports. One key to his story is that his parents always believed his childhood would be just as normal as anyone else's in his neighborhood.
Something as simple as riding a bike was achieved at a very young age by Richie. He even learned to do, what became his favorite thing in the world, drive a car. His attitude of feeling that he can do anything, actually landed him his dream job. Never being satisfied is what drives him to strive for more!more >>