Donna C. Terrell

I Was Just Thinkin'

Shows You Should Be Watching Right Now

It’s the end of January, and we’re pretty much back in the TV swing of things. The Holiday Lull is over and the DVRs are humming again. That said, here are some shows you should be watching on a regular basis–(I have my nerve, don’t I? Dictating your TV life…) These shows are chosen based on entertainment value, originality and ingenuity.

ONCE UPON A TIME

I first caught the October premier, but it didn’t strike me. Then my best friend started raving about it, so I decided to give the show a closer look. I caught up during the Holiday Lull, and now I’m totally on board with the denizens of Storybrooke, Maine.

Why you should watch

The worlds of the present and the Fairy Tale. We get the backstory from the Fairy Tale, and you can’t help but root either for or against the characters in their present form. Some plots are self-contained and wrapped up within a show, and the ongoing threads–the evil queen/mayor who is at the cold heart of the matter and whether Emma/child of Snow White and Prince Charming will get closer to setting things right and breaking the curse–are very easy to follow. And you gotta love sincere, 10-year old Henry–Emma’s birth son and adopted son of the Evil Mayor, and purvey0r of all things fairy tale. He holds the book. (You have to have someone in these types of shows who has a clue, although it’s never explained HOW Henry knows what’s going on. Just go with it.)

GRIMM

This show reminds us that you never know who truly lives among us. Who knew the Fairy Tale world was so…grim? If you never read the real Grimm’s Fairy Tales, which are not pretty, this show is closer to what I guess the Brothers Grimm were talking about.

Why you should watch

Likeable Nick, who’s a detective and one of the last remaining descendants of the Grimms, and all the crazy stuff he has to deal with since he found out about his true calling. The “historical” information about and the weapons and equipment used to combat the dark side of the world of monsters would make the Pawn Stars guys squeal with delight. Gotta love Monroe, the resident know-it-all and Blutbod (werewolf) with a heart of gold fills in the blanks for Nick and adds comic relief. (See? Didja know a werewolf is actually a species called Blutbod? You can learn things from this show!)

How cool would it be to have a cross-over between Grimm and Once Upon a Time!! I could see Henry and Monroe comparing notes while Nick, Hank (Nick’s partner), and Emma butt heads with Mayor Queen.

PERSON OF INTEREST

Why you should watch

You are being watched. And if your number ever comes up, you will want the cunning Mr. Finch (Michael Emerson) and ultra-cool and tough John Reese (Jim Caviezel) on your side! These two guys work in secret by a machine that Finch built to save innocent lives and catch perps. By use of technolgy, weapons and plain ol’wit, street smarts, they try to prevent crimes from taking place. When I watch that ruggedly handsome Jim Caviezel, it’s  hard to imaging him playing Jesus (The Passion of the Christ) when he’s kicking tail as John Reese. What a range, huh? And Taraji Henson brings her brand of class to the table as Detective Carter, the cop who’s on Reese’s trail.

ALCATRAZ

Love the concept of this show! When Alcatraz closed in 1963, the prisoners were supposed to have been transferred of the island. Only they disappeared. Where did they go? And why are they back now? Who are they? Guess we’ll find out!

Why you should watch

Twists and turns! The sci-fi element! Jorge Garcia! This show captured my devotion from the very first episode. It also made me want to learn more about Alcatraz, the island where only the most notorious and nefarious crooks ended up. In a post-Lost world, this is the show that hopefully will have us speculating for quite a while.

Photo credits: IMDb; fox.com; cbs.com

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The Game of Life (Part 2)

In Part 1, we learned that life is the ultimate game, and we know that we all have a game we’re best suited for. Here, we will get more in depth about where and how we fit in and the perspective we should have.

Seasons and Times

Think about the game that you’re in. Are you actively playing now ? If not, you’re not in the season. That’s the reality of it. In April, there are no NFL games being played anywhere in the world. It’s not football season. So, if you’re not playing, you’re not in your season. But that doesn’t mean you’re to be dormant! There’s always an off-season conditioning program! Maybe you’re in the season and time for marketing your business, finishing your degree or straightening up your finances. Perhaps you and your spouse need to get your relationship straight before you bring children into the mix. There are different seasons of our lives. Meanwhile, you continue to work out, stay in shape and keep up with your game.

Observation: Stay in the Word and operate the way the Lord directs.

The Draft

There is a draft that is held in most pro sports, which is how organizations get new players and build teams. Ideally, players come from colleges and universities and have already been playing ball for sometime. (Remember—for our purposes, we’re talking football.)

Eligible for the draft

If a player is ready to be drafted, that means he is ready to play. He has satisfied all requirements for education and the football program at the college. He has played successfully, now he can move on to the next level—pro ball.

  • A college dropout isn’t eligible.

Observation: Have you dropped out and given up your hopes, dreams, your Word that God gave you? If so, get back on track! A dropout can go back to school and you can start again. Also, how much do you want it? Are you willing to pay the price to achieve success? Will you stop eating the wrong things and work out so you can lose weight? Will you network to find work? Nothing just happens!

Once a guy gets drafted, he goes through a training period, and in essence is ready to play in the NFL. The training period is brief. He goes to rookie mini-camp and the regular team training camp. Then he can begin playing, depending on whether or not he’s a starter. He already knows how to play the game. He just needs to learn NFL rules and regulations, and his new team’s playbook and his teammates.

A high-performing college player who set records and won awards comes with a high price. He would probably get selected in the first round. First-round draft picks are usually signed right away and get a very lucrative contract.

However, the teams that get first bids on the top players are the teams with the worst records in the NFL. Losing teams. I guess the rationale is that losing teams need all the help they can get.

Observation: Does that mean that, for example, a really great man or woman—first-round draft picks—will be chosen by a loser? No. Not on God’s team. He doesn’t have losers, nor will He allow His top draft pick to get hooked up with a loser.  And another thing–YOU might be called to elevate somebody else’s game! Cam Newton, 2011’s Heisman Trophy winner and number one draft pick, is just the quarterback the Carolina Panthers desperately needed!

Some players never get to make great plays because they’re stuck on the sidelines. They aren’t starters. They’re second and third string. It’s not that they’re not good; they’re just not the starter. There’s no way they’d be employed by the NFL if they were not good on some levels.

Case in point: Kurt Warner, current analyst for the NFL Network, was the starting QB for the St. Louis Rams from 1998 to 2003. However, he wasn’t always in that position. He was bounced around, cut and totally disregarded when he first started his NFL career. Kurt even held down a $5.50 an hour grocery store gig. He went from being 3rd to throwing the game-winning pass in the 2000 Super Bowl. He also got a multi-million dollar contract! Kurt Warner also led the 2009 Arizona Cardinals to the Super Bowl.

Tom Brady, regarded as the NFL Network’s number one greatest player of 2011 and number 21 on their list of The 100 Greatest Players of all time, was chosen 199th in the 2000 NFL draft. He was chosen in the 6th round. Brady still gets emotional as he speaks of his excruciating wait as player after player was selected before he was. Tom Brady has been to four Super Bowls and has won three.

Observation: Your turn will come. Be ready when it comes, and play your butt off! Just because you weren’t the first chosen doesn’t mean you’re not the best.

Some people play and never get noticed. They never get their names in the paper or mentioned by TV commentators. But they’re still playing well every week.

Observation: Just do what you’re supposed to do. God sees you.

Power and promotion come from nowhere on the earth, but only from God. Psalm 75:6,7

Riches and honor come from God alone; His hand controls power and might and it is at his discretion that men are made great and given strength. I Chron. 29:12

Yet, the question remains:  How do you know when you’ve won the Super Bowl? Isn’t that the ultimate goal down here on Earth? I don’t care what nobody says; we want to see the goodness of God down here in the land of the living. I’m not just looking for rewards in the “sweet by-and-by”: I’m looking for the Super Bowl ring. Even the team who went home in December with a 1–15 record goes into training camp with the mindset of winning the Super Bowl. To desire anything else is unacceptable. I think a head coach would be fired immediately by the team owners if he should say, “Well, we just want to play the best we can and win a few more than we did last year.” No way! If a team and coach don’t go in with a Super Bowl win on the brain, why bother?

I believe we’ve won when we get what we want. Everybody has a heart’s desire. When you get it, you’ve won. Maybe it’s a house. Maybe it’s a spouse, or children, or getting out of debt. You may want to get published, or you’re waiting to be recognized for your singing or acting talent. Maybe you’ve had health problems. Think about your game. Think about all the elements of that game. Maybe you’d rather win the World Cup or an Olympic gold. Ask the Lord what your game is, and where you fit in the scheme of that game. Maybe you’re not into sports and you like television. God might tell you you’re in the script development stage! In that case, you want the Emmy award!

I just want to encourage you that you have a place here and God has a game plan specifically designed for you! You will WIN the Super Bowl!

Photo credits: Tom Brady: Jim Rogash, Getty Images; Cam Newton: Chris Trotman/Getty Images; jostens.com; Kurt Warner: daddycatchersrealm.wordpress.com; blogs.riverfronttimes.com

 

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The Game of Life (Part 1)

(Happy 2012! It’s a new year, as well as the end of the 2011 football season. That being said, let’s start the new year off with some encouragement. Sports are life’s great metaphor, so decide to play your best game this year!)

 

 Some years ago, I went through a brief period of disappointment. I found myself comparing my life to the lives of women I know who in essence have no real impact or effect on my life in any way, shape, form or fashion. I felt like I wasn’t in, as I termed it, the Game of Life. I’m glad that I didn’t remain in this state for long.

Truth: We must be very careful about dwelling on those feelings; they can lead to depression.

It wasn’t until the next year that the Lord began to give me some really cool observations and revelations about the Game of Life. For those of you who are not sports savvy, forgive all the football references. (LOVE football!) Rejoice and be encouraged, because you are on the receiving end of those revelations!

Do you ever feel like you’re not in the game? Do you feel like everyone around you is an active player—marriage, children, careers, vacations, whatever—and you’re on the sidelines watching? Your friends are all discussing their kids’ Little League games and report cards. They’re talking about sons and daughters graduating and getting drivers licenses. You’re not in the Game of Parenthood because you have no children.

The men you work with speak of their wives in extolling ways. They don’t act like they are trapped with the “old ball and chain.” The women bring their husbands to the company Christmas party. They appear to have strong marriages. You have nothing to add to that either because you’re not in the Game of Marriage.

Homeowner buddies are excited about putting a deck out in the backyard; fast-track career climber friends are jet-setting all over the country. How do you fit with those scenarios?

Are you in the Game of Life? Yes. By virtue of simply being alive makes you part of it. Life is a game, metaphorically speaking, because Paul equates it to running a race. A race is a game. In the sports-crazy society we live in, games rule. What you need to understand is the season that your particular game is played, or that you’re in.

Games and Seasons

There are many different games—probably thousands. For our purposes, we’ll mainly deal with professional football and baseball. These are games that are played in different seasons. However, the football and baseball seasons overlap.

Each year, professional sports teams always have training before the start of the season. Those who perform well will make the team. For example, football starts training camp in late July. Preseason games are played in August, and the regular 16-game season kicks off in September. Play-off games are in January, and the season culminates with the Super Bowl in February.

Major League Baseball starts spring training in February, with regular season games beginning in April. Teams play 162 games. Their play-offs are in September. The World Series is in mid-October. It’s a long season, and in my opinion, not very exciting. Why get excited about a team on a winning streak in June, when they can lose 25 games in July? Personally, I wouldn’t get excited over a baseball team in April. Waaaay too early. With football, however, teams can start playoff hopes in the 7th and 8th week.

Training Camp

An athlete must train for his specific sport. Within the sport, players must train for their specific position. In football, the offense goes through different drills than the defense. Even within the two structures, players have different drills. The receivers spend quite a bit of time just catching the ball. The quarterbacks spend time throwing the ball. The tackles and linebackers are practicing their hits. The running backs are going through footwork and dodging exercises.

They must train mentally as well as physically. Coaches are yelling at players, “Stay with me! Focus!” If your body is in the game, but your mind isn’t, you might as well sit down. You won’t be effective.

Observation: Are you ready for your game?

The Baseball Game of Life

Baseball is slow. It’s actually more fun to go to the park and see it live because of the atmosphere. You may not be called to live a fast-paced life. Life is slow and steady. You don’t have to play in the rain. There’s not a lot of contact with other players. This is your game. You may get a hit or not. You may get on base, or not. You may get a home run, or not. Whatever the outcome, there’s still another inning to play. You still get nine chances to get that all-important home run, and if you don’t get it today, there’s always tomorrow.

The Football Game of Life

Football is very exciting. It’s a short season, but full of energy, excitement, and very hard-nosed. It’s all or nothing in football. 16 games. That’s it. It’s rough. Players take hard-hits. It’s played in all weather—from 85 degrees in September to 20 degrees in December. Sometimes players can’t see the ball for fog or snow. There’s no such thing as a rainout in football. Sometimes you can’t tell who the players are because of the mud on the uniforms. There is no series in football. You have to be on. It’s a one-shot deal. Win or go home.

You may play a much more intense and faster game. You’ll have some warm and sunny days. You’ll have some dreary rainy and snowy days. You still have to play. You can’t wimp out. You can’t decide you don’t want to play because it’s raining. You can’t complain because you’re all covered with mud, or because you’re cold. It’s part of your game. It’s not always going to be great weather or physical conditions. Your game may not consist of a lot of chances.

Games (Lives) Can Overlap

In baseball, the World Series takes place in mid to late October. Therefore, baseball season overlaps football season.

In cities where there’s only one stadium, yard lines are painted over second base. Baseball players can look like they’re running for a touchdown; football players can look like they’re sliding into home. Maybe your game will overlap someone else’s game. For a brief period of time, you’re playing on the same field.

Observation: Maybe you will have toddlers while your best friend’s kids are pledging sororities.

People have different abilities. Chicago White Sox home run king Paul Konerko doesn’t play football. His game is different. He trains differently. His season is different and his off-season is different. The rules of his game are totally different than that of Chicago Bears quarterback Jay Cutler. Jay has no  business complaining that his season is too short or it’s too rough. Paul shouldn’t talk about being tired after the 50th game. That’s the nature of their game and that’s what they are. Konerko cannot be a quarterback. He’d get creamed. (Sometimes Cutler gets creamed.) He doesn’t have the training to play football. Jay Cutler can throw a football down field, but with that same arm can he swing a bat with the over-the-fence power of Paul Konerko? Konerko can throw a baseball, but can he throw a football to a  receiver 50 yards away?

Observation: It is a mistake to compare your sport/game/life with another person’s.

The Off-Season

The off-season is when the sport is inactive. During the off-season in the NFL, no games are being played anywhere. But is the sport inactive? No.

There is much activity in the off-season. Much. People get fired, like coaches and managers of losing teams, as well as under-performing players. A lot of people get hired, like new coaches and free agents signing on with other teams. There’s a lot of scrambling to snatch up good players who have become available. College players are drafted. Veterans come and go. Contracts are negotiated. New game plans and schedules are devised.

Observation: There’s always something happening. God is always doing something.

This is not a time for players to kick back and eat cookies all day. True, they should have some much-needed downtime and allow time for their bodies to heal. However, they should still be keeping their bodies in condition.

Observation: Don’t get weary in well doing for in due season you shall reap a harvest. You have to stay ready for your due season.

So, in essence:

¨     God is the Supreme Coach who drafts people for certain games.

¨     He knows who is best suited for a particular game.

¨     He puts us in the game He wants us in.

¨     God comes up with the game plan.

¨     God does not reveal the playbook until He’s ready. He calls all the plays.

¨     You can be in the game, but you may be not playing; it may be your season, just not your turn.

¨     He takes us off the bench when He wants us to play.

¨     Your turn will come—there are no bench-warmers in God’s Kingdom. Everybody has something to do.

¨     We need to stay in condition and in shape throughout the off-season as well, or you won’t be ready when the season begins.

(end part 1)

Photo credits:

gustey.com; Jay Cutler, Rob Grabowski-US Presswire, US PRESSWIRE / November 20, 2011; 123rf.com

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Quick FYI

Hello and Happy New Year! Just a heads-up to let you know that I’m changing the name of this blog to Donna C. Terrell with a tagline of I Was Just Thinkin’. Don’t want to cause any confusion! Being a new blogger, I’m still tweaking.
Cool new post coming within 24 hours…

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