As the world tries to process the shocking news of the death of basketball legend Kobe Bryant, his daughter and friends, my spirit dropped and I thought about his wife and how down, numb and discouraged she must be feeling, (l’m not for one minute saying I know what she is going through). One of the most powerful songs I have ever heard by Donald Lawrence, called “Encourage Yourself” came to mind. It’s good to have friends and family around to cheer you up when you’re down, but in order to truly live in victory and overcome life’s hardships, that encouragement has to come from God’s spirit that lives inside of you. When your mind is telling you it’s not worth it, when your circumstances seem difficult, deep down inside, your spirit has to have the resolve that says, “I refuse to settle where I am.”
David was facing a major setback. His family was killed, his city was destroyed, and his own people were now against him, but he still managed to encourage himself in the Lord. How did he do that? He replayed in his mind the victories from the past. He recounted God’s faithfulness. As he rehearsed over and over the goodness of God, strength began to rise in his heart.
Today, as we think about the tragic loss of Kobe, his daughter and friends, encourage yourself by focusing, like David, on what God has done and is doing. Thank Him for saving you. Thank Him for the miracle of life. Thank Him for His faithfulness. Thank Him for His forgiveness, Focus on the fact that God didn’t bring you this far to leave you. He has given you a clear wake up call to get things right, so stir up that inner strength. As you do, you’ll rise higher and higher, and live the life of victory the Lord has prepared for you.
“David was greatly distressed, for the men spoke of stoning him…But David encouraged and strengthened himself in the Lord his God.”(1 Samuel 30:6, AMP)
Pray With Me
Yahshua, thank You for Your faithfulness today. Father, lift up Kobe’s family and all those in bereavement today. I ask for Your comfort in their lives today and in the coming months and years. Lord, teach us how to focus on You and the things You have done, and the good things You have prepared for our future. I encourage myself today and those around me, knowing that You haven’t brought us this far to leave us. God, I thank You for making a way out of no way, and I will bless You always, in Jesus’ Name! Amen.
Kobe Bean Bryant (August 23, 1978 – January 26, 2020) was an American professional basketball player. A shooting guard, Bryant played his entire 20-season career in the National Basketball Association (NBA) with the Los Angeles Lakers. He entered the NBA directly from high school and won five NBA championships.
Birth date: August 23, 1978
Death date: January 26, 2020
Birth place: Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
Birth name: Kobe Bean Bryant
Father: Joe Bryant, a professional basketball player
Mother: Pam Bryant
Marriage: Vanessa (Laine) Bryant (April 18, 2001-January 26, 2020, his death)
Children: Capri, June 2019; Bianka, December 2016; Gianna, May 2006; Natalia, January 2003
Bryant was 6 feet, 6 inches tall. His parents named him after a type of steak. The beef is from a species of cattle, Wagyu, raised in the Kobe region of Japan. Bryant lived in Italy for eight years while his father played in the Italian Professional Basketball League. Bryant spoke Italian fluently.Nominated for one Academy Award and won.He entered the NBA straight out of high school.In 1996, Bryant was the youngest player in NBA history at that time, at 18 years, 2 months and 11 days.He played his entire professional career for the Los Angeles Lakers.Bryant won two Olympic gold medals for men’s basketball.Bryant is fourth on the NBA all-time scoring list.He won five NBA championships.