Sermon Illustrations

VISIONS OF GLORY

Chan Gailey, who just began his second season as head coach for the Buffalo Bills, got his start coaching football at Alabama's Troy State University. In 1984, with a 12-1 record, he led the Troy State Trojans to a Division II NCAA national championship. A week before the big game, he was headed to the practice field when a secretary called him back to take a phone call.

Somewhat irritated, Gailey told her to take a message because he was on his way to practice.

She responded, "But it's Sports Illustrated."

"I'll be right there," he said.

As he made his way to the building, he began to think about the upcoming article. It would be great publicity for a small school like Troy State to be in Sports Illustrated. As he got closer, he realized that a three-page article would not be sufficient to tell the whole story. Coming even closer to his office, he started thinking that he might be on the cover. "Should I pose or go with an action shot," he wondered. His head was spinning with all of the possibilities.

When he picked up the phone and said hello, the person asked, "Is this Chan Gailey?"

"Yes, it is," he replied confidently.

"This is Sports Illustrated, and we're calling to let you know that your subscription is running out. Are you interested in renewing?" (Chan Gailey speaking at a dinner in Dalton, Georgia, 4-20-04)

Coach Gailey had visions of glory, but then reality set in, and that's often the way it is with life. We get visions of glory, but reality gets in the way and we're humbled in the process.

(From a sermon by C. Philip Green, The Way to Glory, 8/13/2011)

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