An Encouraging Word from Marvin
John Ward passed away last week. John was the “Voice of the Vols” for more than three decades. His calls of UT games are etched in the memory of any Vol fan who ever experienced hearing John say, “Touchdown Tennessee!” Kenny Chesney, the famous country music singer, performed a song inspired by John entitled, “Touchdown Tennessee.” Kenny used two lines which I recall. The first is this: “Your voice was our eyes and we could see touchdown Tennessee.” Only a person who had listened to John call a touchdown could understand what Chesney was singing about. It seemed he could put us in the stadium even though we were hundreds of miles away. The other line was this: “Your voice painted us a picture of all the losses and the wins.”
I had the pleasure of sharing a few meals with John Ward when I was associated with the UT basketball team. He was the consummate gentleman. This man who was among the most familiar people in our state was a faithful Christian, a devoted husband and a friend of all in our state. He loved to grow beautiful roses. He was in love with sports, but his life was filled with other interests. I am glad I got to stand in his shadow on occasion.
Back to those two figures of speech: “Your voice was our eyes…” and “Your voice painted us a picture.” Could it be that you and I could be the voices that are the ones who help others “see” Jesus or “paint a picture of him” so that others would want to know him? I hope so! If so, we will have done something far more important than even call a Vol victory.
This Sunday we will consider our freedoms as Americans and as followers of Jesus. We will think along the lines of “The Importance of a Word.” I look forward to seeing you as we give thanks for our country and our faith,