Daily Archives: April 25, 2013

Book review: Former NFL quarterback encourages others to be their best

Published by:

By Tonya Andris
Inside The Pew

For 14 seasons, Randall Cunningham was the versatile NFL quarterbackLay_It_Down_Randall_Cunningham whom teams depended on to make miracles happen on the gridiron.

Now, Cunningham, 50, is a pastor, a mentor, and an author. His second book, “Lay It Down: How Letting Go Brings Out Your Best,” (Worthy Publishing, $19.99) was recently released. The book takes readers through several episodes in his professional and private life that brought him to rely on God for support and clarification. The most pressing situation – the accidental drowning death of his 2-year-old son, Christian, in 2010. Cunningham fittingly alludes to the death of his son in the title of chapter 2, “The Biggest Hit I Ever Took.”

Instead of showing frustration for his son’s death, Cunningham immediately praised Him. “I got in my car, backed out of the driveway, and began to scream, ‘Hallelujah! Praise God! Thank you! I love you, God.”

“The goal of the book is to allow people to think about life solutions,” said Cunningham, who spent his career playing for the Philadelphia Eagles, the Minnesota Vikings, the Dallas Cowboys, and the Baltimore Ravens. “There is no way we could have got through this (the death of Christian) on our own.”

Fittingly, Cunningham uses football-related phrases to frame his story. Nice touch. For further study of the chapter, the book includes reflection questions and epigraphs from the Bible, C.S. Lewis, Tim Tebow, Tony Dungy, Tony Dorsett, Martin Luther King Jr., and Nelson Mandela.

Mentorship takes on a circular meaning in “Lay It Down.” Cunningham said mentors have been “divinely planted” in his life.

“I’ve always had mentors, I just didn’t realize it,” he told Inside The Pew. “When I was in Pop Warner as a boy, there were men who volunteered their time to coach me. When I attended church, I had pastors who would pray for me. There were teachers who took a vested interest in me because if they didn’t I would not have become the man I am today.”

Cunningham credits Troy Johnson and Robert Johnson for introducing him and his wife, Felicity, into discipleship.

In the book, he also mentions how he is mentored by the nearly 12,000 members of his Las Vegas, Nev., church – Remnant Ministries.

As an NFL player, Cunningham considered the late Reggie White as his mentor, among others. Near the end of chapter 4, he speaks highly of hall of fame defensive end. But, before the “minister” began to connect with him, Tom Cameron introduced him how to stand with God and become a born-again believer. The prose here was engaging.

“It was Reggie White who got in my face and told me you better straighten your life up,” he said.

Just as some of the same ways teachers and pastors mentored to him, Cunningham serves the same role to teens who participate in the high school track and field and club track and field teams he coaches. As a coach, he said is able to mentor to athletes, especially those who are fatherless.

Cunningham wrote, “The building block of our culture begins with strong families, and the father is vital to that equation. Children need a father who is there. … Mentoring begins as a father.”

The book can fit into the classifications of a biography and inspirational non-fiction (well-organized story telling in several chapters). Cunningham’s message is clear as the reader closes its covers: set goals, stay focused, and never hesitate to rest on others for support. These attributes have taken Cunningham pretty far.

“Lay It Down: How Letting Go Brings Out Your Best” is available at Amazon and Borders. To learn more about Remnant Ministries, visit http://www.remnantministries.net/.

How to make money? Learn from the right sources

Published by:

Ahmad Davis

By Ahmad Davis
Special to Inside The Pew

Everyone’s journey to true personal financial freedom is different, but the path is similar. My journey started in 2000 when I was homeless and going through a divorce.

I learned some simple systems for taking control over my finances that have helped me to stop being overwhelmed, pay off debt, strengthen my marriage, and coach a multitude of professionals, couples, and businesses.

Step 1: Learn from the right sources

My oldest daughter is a stereotypical teenager in some respects. She loves to listen to music, her fashion sense is affected by the fads of the day, and she sometimes believes in the wisdom of her peers over the wisdom of us older people. So I decided to take a different approach when challenging some of that wisdom, I would ask for proof. This proof would be need to be in writing from another reliable source, and sometimes more proof is needed. I found that her friends were usually exaggerating about their knowledge or were just plain wrong.

Personal finance is much the same. There are a lot of “experts” giving different opinions about the same information.

Step 2: Do they work from a proven system?
Proven systems can typically be easily explained and have a step by step process involved. If your source can not walk you through the process from A to Z, walk away. This person or business either is not performing these steps in their own lives, have not walked other people through the system successfully, and/or have not taken the time to structure the information so that is easy to understand and simple to implement.

Key Point: Some systems are proven by personal example, some are proven by success of others, but all can be taught in a step by step format.

Step 3: Can you find it in Scripture?
If you look, the Scripture will give you guidance on what to do and what not to do with every part of personal finance from debt, saving, budgeting, investing, making money with a business, etc. One of my favorite Scriptures on this is Philippians 4:6: “Do not be anxious about anything,but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God.”

When you are receiving financial advice, simply walk them through this process and you will quickly weed out advice that is not in your long term best interest.

Ahmad Davis is a Coach with Victory By Design, a firm based in Beaumont, Texas, serving clients locally, nationally and internationally. Ahmad provides solutions for individuals, couples, and businesses who are overwhelmed and stressed financially. Ahmad’s typical clients’ are pastors, single parents, lawyers, couples, doctors, business executives, newlyweds, business owners, and others who want a simple solution with remarkable measurable results. For more information, visit http://www.thebiblicalblueprint.com. To get your questions answered on the Inside The Pew Forum, email Ahmad at coach@thebiblicalblueprint.com.