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Reflecting on Kobe, 6 Lessons from Loss and Athletic Greatness in this Cultural Moment.

The terrible loss of Kobe Bryant has caused us all to reflect on sports, athletic achievement, and the uncertainty of life. We are all saddened by this tragedy. Thank you for your inspiration, Kobe. We grieve your passing. May your family find comfort and peace.

As we reflect on this loss, would you consider…

1. Athletic entertainment moves us, and inspires us to greatness.

From the Olympics to the Super Bowl to the NBA finals losing ourselves in sport gives us a wonderful respite from the relentless grind of life. You can’t watch Usain Bolt run, Michael Phelps swim, the Williams sisters serve, Tom Brady throw, or Kobe Bryant ball, without being inspired to do something great yourself. Even when they are defeating our favorite opponent, we seem to respect their unparalleled gifts. Their excellence in sport drives us and inspires us to something more in whatever we do. For this we are deeply grateful. Thank you for your inspiration, Kobe.

2. Life is a gift, be grateful and mindful of everyday.

A husband, father, leader, and one of the greatest basketball talents of all time was cut off by a tragic accident. His daughter and others also taken far too soon. I never met Kobe, but my heart hurt as I read the news. I hurt for his family, his wife, his children and his friends. Life is a wonderful gift. Too often we take it for granted. Every. Single. Day. We should maximize the gift of life. Be grateful for every day.

3. If life is a gift, we should value ALL lives.

The hypocrisy of those who mourn the life of Kobe while affirming the murder of millions of babies is disheartening. All life is a gift. We as a culture must stop ripping life from mothers and calling it health care. Our hearts should be saddened by all human death, not only celebrities.

4. We should honor people who have impacted us.

In the next days, weeks and months we will give tributes to Kobe, as we should. His fans will remember a champion. His teammates, a leader. His family, a husband and father. Using your talents to entertain the world is a special gift. Winners should be honored.

5. However, our culture has its priorities out of alignment.

We have prioritized sport and entertainment above more meaningful pursuits in the world. Let us not forget the soldiers and law enforcement who protect our country from evil, the teachers who equip our children, the doctors, nurses, and scientists who fight disease, the lawyers who champion justice, the entrepreneurs who create jobs and fund our charities, the preachers who teach the Bible’s truth in love, the moms and dads who sacrifice for their children, they too are heroes! Heroes are all around us. Let us not forget to honor those who do more than entertain us.

6. Life is short and we are not promised tomorrow.

Are you prepared for eternity? None of us will live forever. Jesus came to give us more abundant life, a life with hope beyond the grave because He conquered death. Have you turned from your sin and accepted Him? Have you made Him Lord of your life? Life is short but if you are reading this it is not too late. Trust Him by faith alone today.

For those who know Jesus personally, may this be a reminder of our need to spread the message of the gospel to everyone we can. When was the last time you shared the gospel with a family member, friend or co-worker? Life is short. The gospel is our only hope!

We remember that other precious lives , including Kobe's daughter, were taken in this tragedy. Join me today in a prayer for the Bryant family and each person touched by the tragic loss of this accident. Remember the legacy of an athlete who entertained and inspired the world. And let us be reminded of the beauty of life and the hope beyond the grave that Jesus brings to all of us through His gift of eternal life.

Tinseltown /

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