Mortar 6, Reliability - Bottom of the Ninth #134

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Bottom of the 9th - Reliability

Reliability - Mortar 6, John Wooden's Pyramid of Success by Keith Wahl

"To hold a structure of bricks (or blocks) together, the mason applies mortar around each layer. In the Pyramid of Success, character qualities bond the 15 building blocks, thus symbolizing mortar. These character qualities actually run throughout the Pyramid and help us advance toward the apex."

Wooden said the following powerful words to share about Reliability:

"When we are Reliable, others know that they can depend on us. They know that we will make the effort to do our best, whatever the situation might be. They know we won't run, cower or become paralyzed by fear. They have learned to count on our consistency and trustworthiness. We'll still be there making the effort to do our best long after weaker people have faded."

Some say that "sports develop character", but my belief is that the saying "sports reveal character" is much more true. That statement - "sports reveal character" - is not exclusive to athletes. Sports also reveal the character of the coaches. I'm not about to write this and brag about my Reliability. Rather, let me tell you about how I have been totally unreliable to that beautiful woman in the picture above.

That's my wife, Alyson, and I on our wedding day in 2003. We experienced lots of joy that day and had a ton of hope in our hearts. Neither one of us would be able to project how we would hurt and fail each other over the past 12 years. Thank the Lord for what we call grace and vows that said, "until death do us part."

On two separate occasions, both involving hospital visits, I was totally unreliable as it applied to my wife's needs. The first was during the birth of our son, Brady. It was the middle of baseball season, our first at Valor, and I did not give Alyson my attention. I was wrapped up mentally in what was happening at school and on the baseball field instead of being enveloped with our newborn son. Frankly, it's embarrassing to admit. 

But would I make it one mistake and take advantage of a second chance? Of course not. A few years ago, my wife had a procedure that was an outpatient surgery. Instead of staying in the room until they kicked me out, I left my wife in the room to wait alone while I jumped out to the lobby to work on some email or practice plan that would change the course of history (sarcasm noted).

As you read this, I'll be taking advantage of a third chance to be Reliable to my wife. She's going in for a major surgery on Thursday morning and I'll be by her side. Period. They're going to have to ask me to leave before she goes in. My touch will be the first she feels when she comes out of surgery and my face will be the first she sees. While it's taken me time to learn this, my desire is for my wife to know that I will love her by being Reliable.

Thank you, Creator of Heaven and Earth, for giving me a third opportunity to learn Reliability, and thank you for always being Reliable for each and every man, woman, and child who calls your name.

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