Monday, April 5, 2010

Age: It’s Just a Number—Right?

I am forever indebted to John McCain (R-AZ). Every time my mother makes an attempt to tell me she can’t do something because she is too old, I respond “Mom, sorry, but McCain ran for President of the United States at 72 years of age." In fact he’s seeking re-election for his seat in the Senate right now.” What can she possibly say to that?

Age is just a number, right? Perhaps it is, but I can’t help from thinking that according to Taylor Swift's "Fifteen," the unofficial theme song of my girls' cross country team, that it's something more. ‘Cause when you’re fifteen and somebody tells you they love you, you’re gonna believe them. In other words, we "grow in age and in wisdom." Luke's Gospel tells us that Jesus did too.

But what strikes me about final game of this epic NCAA March Madness is the age of the two head coaches. One is the paragon of a coach who has grown in age and wisdom, and well, just take one look at Brad Stevens, head coach of the Butler Bulldogs and you can’t help but ask “how old is he?” At first glance, you might think he is Gordon Hayward’s older brother. When I read that he graduated from college in 1999, I immediately uttered “Oh my God!”

At the other end of the hardwood stands one Mike Krzyzewski, a man who has been coaching longer than Stevens has been alive. With his 867 wins, "Coach K" is a qualified response to a question I raised about John Wooden: “Could his incredible record winning of 10 NCAA titles in his last 12 seasons happen today?” When Duke emerged as the only #1 seed to make it to the Final Four, I looked at him and raised the question: “wait, now how old is he?” once again. Who would have thought that listening to E Street Radio on Holy Saturday would answer my question. Although initially suprised, my friend Eileen was delighted to hear Krzyzewski DJ for nearly two hours. "That makes sense" she thought, "they're about the same age." The Boss is 60, Krzyzewski is 63. Springsteen is known as the "hardest working man in Showbiz." Perhaps the final game will prove Coach K is that of college hoops.

Every Holy Week, I am humbled by the fact that Jesus’ ministry began at 30 and ended with his death at 33. In three short years, Jesus Christ, the Son of God and Son of Man transformed the world. Age may be a number, it may even be a state of mind but the truth remains: Christ's message is one for all ages. In this Easter season, we are called to remember Jesus Christ yesterday, today and forever. Happy Easter!

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