Jesus is…

Finish that sentence for me.

Of course, I expect to hear, “Jesus is my savior”, or “Jesus is the son of God”. That is not exactly what I mean.

Is Jesus a thought, an umbrella, or oxygen?

Do you go about your sin filled life, and look at your dust covered Bible on the shelf (assuming you have one in the first place), and think about Jesus. Think about how you should probably start going to church and doing right…but then just like that the thought is gone. You are right back in the swing of your carefree life.

Do you go through life, as an “active” Christian. You go to church…when you’re not too tired. Maybe you even read your Bible…occasionally. But when it comes to Jesus, you only pull Him out during the storms of your life. He is your umbrella, to shield you when life gets rough.

We should be consider Jesus to be along the same level of importance as food, water…or better yet, oxygen. The body can survive for days without food or water, however, it can only survive minutes without oxygen. We should have such a close walk with our Savior, that we cannot stand to be away from Him, even for a moment. We should want to feel His loving presence enveloping our lives at all times. When we breathe, we should only want the sweet smell of His grace to fill or nostrils. Our ears should be closed to all but the sound of the glorious sound of His word.

I wish I could say that I live as a man who sees Jesus as oxygen all of the time. Too many times I take my “old man” (the one I was supposed to have put to death) out of the cupboard, and go back to my “Jesus umbrella” lifestyle. I pray that I will finally decide to shed that old man, who has done nothing but suffocate me, and keep me from being who God wants me to be, and start living my life breathing in only Jesus. I pray this for all who need it as well. Amen

An Inspiring Story About an Amazing Young Man

Photo Credit: Janaye Johnson Photography

Taquarius Wair fought through his disabilities and received an offer to play football at the collegiate level.

At just 4 years old, Wair was involved in a tragic house fire. He got out, but his sister was still inside. Wair ran back in to try and save her, but he then became caught in a burning room.

“All I can remember is the fire all around me,” Wair said. “My Mother called my name and I came walking out of the fire. She said it was then that she knew I was going to be special.”

Over half of his body was burned to a severe degree and he lost four fingers on his left hand. His sister unfortunately perished in the blaze. March 2019 will be the 14th anniversary of the fire, a tragic event that paved a long road to Wair’s attempt at a normal life.

The next few years were tough for Wair and his family. Although he claims to remember little until he began playing football at a young age, Wair said that is when his life became memorable.

“I don’t remember much of my life before I was 8, but I do know that is when my no quit attitude was developed,” said Wair. “I remember people looking at me and probably thinking I wasn’t going to be good, but I was really good.”

When he started playing football, it was apparent that he had talent. Wair played running back and quarter back on most of his teams. Missing four fingers on his left hand didn’t stop Wair, he won Offensive MVP and also helped lead his team to a semi-finals game.

The biggest hurdle he would face were the constant surgeries on his scar tissue. These surgeries would sideline him every year. The procedures would consist of making incisions to relieve stress on the tight and sometimes painful areas known as scar bands. Repairing these areas of the body Increased Wair’s ability to twist and raise his arms. The healing process alone may have exhausted an average person, but not Wair. He was determined to come back every year to keep playing the sport he loved.

“My arm was stuck in an l-shaped position, so I had surgeries on my scar tissue to get more mobility,” Wair said.

Wair’s high school career became even more inconsistent in terms of playing time. He had multiple surgeries and eventually transferred high schools, requiring him to sit out his junior year. Wair’s new school, North High School, is where he ended up playing for head coach Charles Adams.

“T.Q. can do anything, I never treated him differently than any of the other kids,” said Adams.

Wair ended playing outside linebacker, defensive back, kick return and running back.

Coach Adams recalled a specific moment when he knew Wair was going to do something special on the football field.

“We were having a tough day of practice and some of the boys were complainin,” said the coach. “T.Q. yelled at them saying to keep crying so I can take your minutes.”

North High School is a small inner-city school in the city if Minneapolis. It has limited funds, no lights, and a spotty grass field.

“Most of our kids are on reduced lunch and parents can’t even afford the 25-dollar participation fee,” said Adams. “Kids can get discouraged with all the lack of resources at our school, never mind struggling through a disability, this is what makes T.Q.’s accomplishments especially amazing.”

Wair finished off his first ever complete football season in 2018. He helped lead his team to the 2A State Semi-Finals at U.S. Bank Stadium in Minneapolis, Minnesota. T.Q. will be playing football for head coach Tom Inforzato at Mesabi Range Community College.

His goal is simple.

“My next step is to play in the NFL like Shaquem Griffin,” said Wair.

Taquarius Wair is going to be an inspiration for kids in years to come, I can’t wait to see how his life unfolds

Story by Ron Robert

A Moment Taken

Yesterday I spent the day outdoors. After a morning round of thunderstorms (intense enough to wake me up and be a little concerned), the rest of the day was glorious. The sky was clear and that fathomless blue that comes after a spring storm has scoured the pollution away. The sun was shining, there was a light breeze blowing, and the temperature was a perfect 78 at the high.

I took this opportunity to get out and do some work outside that needed to be done. I spent a very productive day attending to the vehicles, and beginning work on reorganization of my garage. But as the day was winding down (as well as my energy level), I was in the process of moving the final items to their new home in the backyard shed, when I passed by the plum tree, and looked up. Mind you I had already walked this path about 40 times already, but this time I looked up to the tree. I noticed that the tree was in full bloom. And at that time of day the softer, warmer light of the setting sun was lighting the petals of those plum blossoms…and I was stopped in my tracks. I stood in awe of the beauty before me. Nothing more than a plum tree flowering on an early spring evening, but God showed up right there. In that moment.

I ran to the garage for my phone, so I could try to hold onto that for a while longer…I’m so grateful I chose to take that moment.

Look around you in your daily routine…God is there. All you have to do is stop and take the moments, the beautiful gifts He gives you.