Last week, the NBA had this year’s drafting of those who could very well be the upcoming basketball stars for the next season. For the last few months, basketball fans and critics have been setting their eyes on 19-year-old Lonzo Ball.
Ball has been outstanding as a college player, being most notable for his great passing instinct and weird but sharp jump shot. Last week, he was drafted 2nd pick overall by the Los Angeles Lakers. Analysts are already considering him the face of the franchise.
But it seems that Lonzo’s way up the basketball marquee has been followed by the loud and sometimes obnoxious bragging of his dad, Lavar Ball.
The social media is flooding with negative comments towards Lavar Ball for the over-confidence he’s shown over his son’s future in the NBA. He’s already predicted that Lonzo will bring the Lakers to the Playoffs this season. Fans don’t like it. Even some Lakers fans are loathing all the bragging.
Cheering On The Next Generation
Victory just had a one-week series called “Impact” where we took one Sunday to talk about our heart for the next generation. One thing that I learned from the series is this: the next generation- students, youth, our children, nieces, nephews and younger siblings- need cheerleaders.
Today’s youth is filled with people who are either struggling for purpose or longing for those who will help propel them to a greater vision. That’s why I bring up Lavar and Lonzo Ball. I’m in no way defending him. No, I’m not a Lakers fan. I’m a Spurs fan and I’ve made that clear before. Yes, many times Lavar can be annoying when holding a microphone, but I think he could be getting something that we haven’t.
Lavar has been cheering on his son Lonzo from day one. Could it be that Lavar’s bragging/cheering/believing in Lonzo has something to do with the 19-year-old’s success?
Are we being a “Lavar Ball” to our “Lonzos?”
I can’t deny that the only reason why I am right now is because of the “Lavar” who cheered me on when I was still a budding “Lonzo.” I’m thankful for my parents who always invested and believed in me. I’m thankful for mentors who coached me. I’m thankful for Victory Group leaders who pushed me to my limit. I’m thankful for my wife who inspires me and brings out the best in me.
Everyone needs a “Lavar” who will cheer them on. But more importantly, we all need to be a Lavar to someone. Psalm 71:18 captures the heart of such a desire saying, “So even to old age and gray hairs, O God, do not forsake me, until I proclaim your might to another generation, your power to all those to come.” Just as the Psalmist desired to live so that he may uplift the next generation by declaring God’s power, we too are to desire to be used by God to be a light to the generation that is to come.
There’s nothing trivial about cheering on the next generation. It entails giving encouragement to someone you’re training or interning to take your place. It involves coaching your staff to become better workers. It demands that we spend time with our children to train them in the way that they should go.
A challenge for all of us today- who is your “Lonzo” and how are you building him or her up to become the next star of your industry?