Part of my morning routine includes looking through various "news" web sites gleaming information to feed my brain. This morning was different. I hesitated for a second when I read the headline, Legendary Coach in Hospice.

This pause moved me to look. You might say looking through the obituaries everyday is a morbid habit, but nonetheless it is a routine that allows me to reflect on the lives of many I have known; some personally, others from afar. This story, though, caused me to appreciate, to reflect, and to praise God. 

The notice was about Coach Don Meyer, the winningest coach in men's basketball when he retired in 2010. He influenced many including Pat Summit. He was friends with Coach John Wooden and Bobby Knight. He was the epitome of a coach, but more importantly a man of faith.

So what is so special about this guy might be what you are asking me right now. To be honest, most of you may never have heard of Coach Meyer, but he is influencing you this moment because he is one of the reasons you are following my journey,

A little over two years ago, his story changed my life. I made the promise to live a life more like him, to walk closer to God. 

So what did he do to create this change? Was it because he won championships as a coach? No. It was because of what he said. Coach Meyer had survived a horrific car accident, an accident that would take his left leg from below the kneecap, an accident that occurred right in front of his team as they all drove on their way to a pre-season retreat. While in surgery in an attempt to save his leg from the serious injuries, doctors discovered that Coach Meyer had an inoperable cancer in his liver and small intestine

"What's great about this is I would not have known about the cancer had I not had the wreck. God has blessed (me) with the one thing we all need, which is truth. I can now fight with all of my ability," Meyer wrote in a letter released to the media. "What I now ask is that everybody who believes in God would praise him for this discovery and pray to him to give me the strength, patience and peace to be a man of God on this journey." 

After reading his story, I decided to follow wherever God would lead me. I hadn't planned on it being out of a dying marriage or even five hundred miles northwest of my home, but that is where God wanted me to be. What I didn't know is that God was providing me with a partner who would be my best friend, would would support me in prayer and in health. I was meant to be in my new home because it is less than an hour's drive from one of the best Parkinson's centers for treatment and management of this disease, and a new job that would still allow me to teach and reach young men and women.  

He has outlived the initial prognosis given six years ago, but in the next day or so, he will meet our Father in heaven. His legacy, though, will continue. I am thankful to Coach Meyer who taught me a lesson bigger than basketball. I will live, like him, with God as my partner.

Isn't it amazing how lucky you can be.

Moreover, when God gives someone wealth and possessions, and the ability to enjoy them, to accept their lot and be happy in their toil—this is a gift of God. They seldom reflect on the days of their life, because God keeps them occupied with gladness of heart.

Ecclesiastes 5:19-20 (NIV)