Even if you’re not an NBA fan, you’ve probably heard the name ‘Jeremy Lin.’ And you’ve probably suffered through many of the bad puns that his name has given birth to. But you may not know the back story.
Simply by virtue of the fact that he’s one of the few Chinese players in the NBA, Lin has a huge following in the Asian community. Earlier this year, he was thrust into the limelight after leading the Knicks on a 7 game winning streak.
Lin had been cut by the Houston Rockets and the Golden State Warriors. He was sent down to the D-League (stands for ‘Developmental’ – the NBA equivalent of the minors) 3 times in his career. It is rumored that he wasn’t more than a week away from being cut by the Knicks when he was inserted into the fourth quarter of a blowout in Carmelo Anthony’s absence.
And the rest, as they say, is history.
Now I’m a Kicks fan from way back. To me, the Knicks still are and always will be Patrick Ewing, John Starks, Anthony Mason, Charles Oakley and Derek Harper. And Pat Riley is their coach. Since that era, things have been pretty bleak. The Knicks’ rare playoff appearances have been disastrous.
So yeah. I’m excited to have something to cheer about. And yeah, I know that Lin’s star is bound to fade. No one who burns that bright burns for long. In fact, even now sporting goods stores are finding themselves glutted with excess Jeremy Lin merchandise. I’m not sure how the Ben & Jerry’s custom flavor is selling but I’m going to go out on a “Lin” and say it won’t be around for too much longer.
Bwahaha!!! I’m hilarious.
But I do think Lin will be around for a long while. And here’s why: one thing that I’ve heard coaches, commentators and former NBA players saying in unison about Jeremy Lin is that he has a way of making those around him play better. It’s more than just court vision or the ability to pull off a wicked no-look pass. It’s an intangible gift for elevating the gifts and talents of those around you to another lever.
It’s hard to name it, but coaches know it when they see it. And Lin has it.
How about you? Are you making those around you better? Are you encouraging the people in your workplace and in your family toward greater things? Do the people who interact with you each day find themselves carrying a little of the residue of God?
You don’t need to be an amazing talent. No Michael Jordan comparisons are necessary. All it takes is a willingness to play the part God has given you to play in His amazing story.
Honor God. Love Others. Serve All. And you’ll make those around you better and become invaluable to any team lucky enough to have you.