Faithlife Sermons

Learning By Example

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Curtis Martin, former running back for the New York Jets, says, "Don't put me in the category of guys who avoid being role models. Look at the position I'm in. People look up to me. So I try to set an example, let them know that if you do things right, your life will probably turn out well."

He goes on to say, "The person who taught me that was my mother. She's my hero."

Curtis grew up in a rough Pittsburgh neighborhood; more than a few of his friends and family members died violent deaths. He was able to avoid the most dangerous situations because his mother told him which people and which places to stay away from.

He said, "She knew I wasn't faster than a bullet...I listened to her because I hated to disappoint her."

To this day, Curtis remains close to his mother. She's the one he turns to when he has problems, and she even comforts him when he has a bad game.

A couple of years ago when the Jets played the Buffalo Bills, Curtis didn't have a good game. Bruce Smith (the Bill's defensive end) was particularly hard on Curtis that day. After the game, Curtis' mom came on to the field and asked her son, "Honey, are you OK?" Then she went straight to Bruce Smith. She shook her finger at him and said, "I'm mad at you!" I can only guess that Bruce apologized; he certainly didn't want Curtis' mom after him.

This story reminds us that moms never stop being moms, and kids never stop needing them. It reminds us also of the words of King Solomon...

Train a child in the way he should go, and when he is old, he will not turn from it. (Proverbs 22:6)

— Steve May

© 2001/2007. This Monday Memo was previously published by Steve May

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