Demario Davis is a regular contributor to The Increase and will be providing monthly articles and opinions.
I’ll never forget the day that I was drafted into the NFL. It felt like the whole town, along with my entire family, showed up at my grandmother’s house in Collins, Mississippi. For two nights we had a big party, complete with a barbecue and fish fry, and everyone was coming to support and pray for me.
The second night, as I was eating barbecue and playing with my little cousins, the phone rang and my mom screamed. It was the New York Jets. I took the phone into the backyard and by the time I returned to the house, my mom was crying and everyone was shouting with excitement for me.
That was an amazing feeling; it was a culmination of what I had worked so hard for and looked forward to for so long. I remember just hugging my mom and saying to her, “We made it.” We had been through quite the journey together in my pursuit of the NFL, and finally I had been validated by the league. The sense of relief lasted for only a moment, though, because suddenly I realized that the process was just beginning.
Deep breath. Now, a new challenge. The challenge of making it to the NFL was complete but now the challenge was to stay in and make something of yourself. I had to learn that you can never live off the hype of what you used to do, you have to be hyped up about what you are going to do.
While validation from the NFL was an amazing feeling of accomplishment and joy, a greater sense of validation came for me in 2008 when I gave my life to Christ. This validation was different because I was accepted and loved by Christ, not because of what I had done, but because of what He has done for me. I have freedom in Him because He has covered me with His grace. And I wanted to tell everyone about this new freedom that I had found!
Before I came to know Christ as my Savior, I was always trying to earn validation in life, trying to create my own destiny, but God showed me that He had my life in His hands. I had to learn to let go and trust where God was going to take me; I felt liberated and free. The pressure of trying was gone and I felt stronger and more confident than I ever had before. I see God’s providence and grace in my life every day; I know that no matter where He takes me next, I am secure and validated in His name.
“Being confident of this, that He who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus.” —Philippians 1:6
Check out Demario’s Increase profile here: https://theincrease.com/author/demario-davis/
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