Iron Mountain ski jump

Iron Mountain ski jump

Monday, September 25, 2017


CHRIST IN WINTER: Reflections on Faith from a Place of Winter for the Years of Winter… ©

“He doesn’t have to act that way.” That’s what Greg Gooch, a defensive end on IU’s football team, said about first year Head Coach Tom Allen at the Coach’s Radio Show last week. Greg smiled when he said it. He has a great smile.

It was after Don Fischer, the show’s host, asked Greg what he wants to do after college, Greg looked a bit abashed. “Coach,” he said. “Did you want to coach before Coach Allen came?” Fischer asked. “No,” Gooch admitted. “But now… well, he doesn’t have to act that way.”

He was talking about the obvious energy and enthusiasm Allen brings to the job. Allen is 47 years old. He’s getting a little past the prime years for jumping around and cheering and clapping like a teenaged cheerleader. But he does it. Time after time after time.

That’s his mantra: time after time after time. He tells his players, “You need to make the right decision, in football, in the classroom, in life, every time, time after time after time.”

That last “after time” makes the difference. If it were just “time after time,” it wouldn’t be enough to make Greg Gooch want to coach. It has to be full in.

When Don Fischer asked the senior from Florida about his own philosophy of life, he said, “Make the right decision, time after time after time.” He has learned his lesson well.

It’s tempting in old age to get sloppy, mentally as well as physically. It’s easy enough to make the right decision one time. Maybe two times. Time after time after time is a lot of work. We’re tired. We’ve worked at making the right decisions for a long time. Shouldn’t we get a break?

Think, though, about where you put your glasses. If you’re sloppy and put them down just anyplace, it takes all day to locate them. But if you put them down in the same place time after time after time, you know where to find them.

Life is really easier if we make the right decision time after time after time.


I started this blog several years ago, when we followed the grandchildren to the “place of winter,” Iron Mountain, in Michigan’s Upper Peninsula [The UP]. I put that in the sub-title, Reflections on Faith from a Place of Winter for the Years of Winter, where life is defined by winter even in the summer! [This phrase is explained in the post for March 20, 2014.] The grandchildren, though, are grown up, so in May, 2015 we moved “home,” to Bloomington, IN, where we met and married. It’s not a “place of winter,” but we are still in winter years of the life cycle, so I am still trying to understand what it means to be a follower of Christ in winter…

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