Hope your week is going well. There’s quite a few popular social topics to discuss, and I’ve picked six to share. Let’s get to them.
- Scott Brooks
I am glad I had some time before addressing the Oklahoma City Thunder letting Coach Scott Brooks go. If you read my DHD last week, you know I said “Don’t believe the garbage of the Thunder getting rid of Coach Brooks.” I was wrong.
The Thunder dismissed Brooks but not because of anything he did or did not do. GM Sam Presti said this was about the future and not about the past, which means this has to do with more than preparing for next season. The Thunder are primed to win an NBA title, and many are aware of this, which means this seems to be an odd time to change coaches and appears to be a risky move.
I am surprised as other Thunder fans. It’s hard for me to fully grasp the reason for firing Brooks. But just as I sat at Owen Field that October night, watching the Sooners lose to Notre Dame and, in the middle of this disappointment, hearing my brother-in-law tell me the Thunder just traded James Harden, I am certain, in time, this move also will make sense.
- Next Thunder Head Coach?
I don’t know who will be the next Thunder head coach. Popular opinion is that it will either be collegiate coaches Kevin Ollie, UConn, or Billy Donovan, Florida. As difficult as it is for me to deal with the Thunder dismissing Scott Brooks, it is equally hard to believe the Thunder will turn over the reins to a coach with no NBA experience.
Yes, Ollie is a former Thunder player, and a well-respected one, especially among his former OKC teammates. Yes, Donovan is a successful coach with two NCAA titles and has developed many players who are currently on NBA rosters (Bradley Beal, Corey Brewer, Udonis Haslem, Al Horford, David Lee, Mike Miller, Joaquin Noah, Chandler Parsons and others).
Usually, though, it would seem that a team with far less potential of winning an NBA title would be a better fit for a coach like Ollie or Donovan. People talk about the success Brad Stevens has accomplished with the Celtics, after coaching at Butler. But the Celtics have gone through a major rebuilding phase. Nobody expected Stevens to win an NBA championship in his first year at Boston. That’s what is expected of the next Thunder coach.
Now, just as I’m sending this out on the internet, watch an announcement be made that either of these guys will be named the next coach in OKC. If so, as a Thunder fan, I’ll learn to adjust.
However, unless the announcement happens today or even sometime next week, I would favor the possibility of somebody with NBA coaching experience to be the next Thunder coach. In fact, be aware of how long the San Antonio Spurs are still competing in the playoffs.
I know it’s considered a pipedream, but I don’t think it’s out of the realm of a possibility of the Thunder landing Gregg Popovich, especially if Tim Duncan announces he is retiring. It is widely known the relationship Presti has with the Spurs, and Thunder chairman of ownership Clay Bennett LOVES Popovich.
Call me crazy, but until the official announcement is made, I’ll keep dreaming.
- Randy Travis speaks openly about God’s Grace
I read the letter country singer Randy Travis wrote to fans after the ACM Awards Show. I wasn’t aware of him suffering a stroke. I’m not an avid country music fan, so I don’t keep up with that social news.
It is great that he was introduced during the Sunday night broadcast after the singing of his popular song “Forever and Ever Amen.” In response, Travis penned his appreciation. You can read the full letter here.
While addressing his letter, this is my weekly emphasis of the Gospel being shared. Travis said he “gained a greater understanding of God’s grace.” Later he wrote about “God’s amazing grace.”
I am encouraged by Travis’ words. To speak openly and clearly about how powerful God’s grace is, especially after his experience, should cause more than a response of sentiment. May God use this letter for further understanding of many to His wonderful grace and the saving power of His Gospel message.
- A conversation with an LGBT affiliate
Yesterday, I received a phone call from a media member who is doing a follow-up story about the “Gospel, Sexuality and the Church” conference in early March, hosted by the Baptist General Convention of Oklahoma. The gentleman mentioned who he represented, and I initially presumed he was planning to paint a negative picture of the conference.
He said he watched the videos of the sessions from the conference that are featured on www.bgco.org, and he pointed out he viewed the breakout session that I moderated, “What to Do When a Loved One Says ‘I’m Gay.’”
I was grateful to hear him speak positively about the session. He said he also found Russell Moore’s opening sermon at the conference to be encouraging.
Our conversation was professional and positive. There was an understanding that we both represent groups that have opposite views, but it does not mean we had to be argumentative, even disagreeable.
I have no idea what his story will present. I pray it will be reflective of the conversation we shared.
- Read Moore’s blog post on Bruce Jenner
Speaking of Russell Moore, you need to read his blog post that went up today, “What Should the Church Say to Bruce Jenner?” on Moore to the Point.
All of it is powerful, as Moore comes through, yet again, on the best way to approach this popular social issue. But this is one of my favorite parts:
“The hope for Bruce Jenner, and for others like him, is not to alter the body with surgery or to flood their system with hormones. The answer is to realize that all of us are born alienated from what we were created to be. We don’t need to fix what happened in our first birth; we need a new birth altogether.”
- Pray for Marriage
Next week is when the Supreme Court begins to hear arguments on same-sex marriage. As I mentioned previously, I hope you will consider to set aside time to pray specifically for this trial at 9 a.m. CST on April 28. You can read more about this emphasis here.
I’m off to the “Rewired” Men’s Retreat at Falls Creek. If you’re going too, I hope to see you there!