Today, how appropriate. On the very day set aside to honor the man who taught us to have a dream, we learn they really do come true.
Ray Lewis has one. John & Jim Harbaugh have one. The Ravens have one. A city has one.
Today, we are living the dream. It all begins with a dream, with a vision, a purpose, something to shoot for, then find a way to succeed.
Talk about what seems like the impossible coming true. But that’s just it, if you believe it impossible, your mind, heart and spirit will follow your lead. But believe you can, and you will.
A little more than a month ago it seemed like the season was spiraling into the abyss for the Ravens. Ray Lewis had yet to return. John Harbaugh and his offense was on the hot seat. The defense was old and slow. Injuries were affecting all action on the field. The city was mumbling under its collective breath about all the issues facing their beloved football team. Today, Lewis, Harbaugh, the Ravens and Baltimore are back in the Super Bowl.
But how? This is not a breakdown of sport “x’s and o’s”, but an observation of dreams, goals and success all in perfect harmony. The day Ray Lewis announced his retirement it seems everything fell into place. Actually, if you want to go back to last year, post AFC championship loss and relive Ray’s speech to his team, that’s really the genesis of it all:
“The fact is, we gotta come back and go to work to make sure we finish it next time. That’s all we gotta do. Let’s understand who we are as a team, let’s understand who we are as men, and let’s make somebody smile when we walk out of here. We got the opportunity to keep going, men. Let’s be stronger as a team, men. Let’s be who we are.”
Today we are all smiling. The Ravens, AFC Champions – and Super Bowl contenders. The spiritual, and emotional leader of the team put the goal in front of them last year and the team made it happen. It’s hard to find a better story of strength and determination through adversity. But it’s no accident, it’s not just luck, it’s the dream, backed by a vision, defined by a purpose, fueled by passion and not just setting, but acheiving a goal.
If you fail to dream big, then your goals end up being small. Believe it, feel it, and work toward it and the universe somehow takes care of itself. Maybe the purpose wasn’t really out there until Ray Lewis decided it was time to hang up the cleats after the “final game”. If the Ravens and John Harbaugh never truly lost confidence, they certainly found their passion when Lewis told them he was calling it quits after this season. A defining moment that set everyone and everything on a single path, with a single focus to win it all. To get Ray back to the Super Bowl and another ring before he heads to the Hall of Fame. Ray is one man, he can’t do it alone, it’s a team game, but with everyone on board, this train is unstoppable.
And what about John and Jim Harbaugh? I mean come on. You think maybe they used to play football in the backyard and dream of one day being an NFL player or a coach and facing each other in the Super Bowl? If they did, did they really think it might happen? Dream big. Work hard. Realize success.
Talk about some crazy karma. But it’s no accident. It’s the same formula. Dream, vision, purpose, passion and a big goal.
A man and a team with a dream. Two brothers with a dream. A city that gets to live the dream… again. We, as spectators get to ride on the back of the incredible spiritual and emotional wave the ulitmate championship game can provide. An entire community, fueled by the passions of a few men who have the power to make something bigger possible. Make it real.
Ray Lewis, John Harbaugh and the Ravens provide proof of doing everything you can to live your purpose. And it’s no different if you’re a part of an NFL team, or one man, or one woman standing alone, but with a dream bigger than you once thought possible. If you believe it possible, if you allow your thoughts, mind, and spirit to get in the game and work toward that dream, it really can come true.
As a community today we wake up living the dream, through men who dared to do the same on the field of play. But if you get in the game, the same can be true for you. Dream big, play hard, and don’t ever, ever, ever give up.
Until next time, thanks for taking the time.