Once again we are coming to the end of the great NCAA
tournament season known as March Madness. We are down to the top two teams
Virginia and Texas Tech. Along the way there were several Cinderella teams that
upset the teams that were supposed to make it all the way to the end of the “big
dance”. Seven of the games were decided by one or two points. Four games went
into over time before a winner was decided.
I did not see all of the games during the tournament, but I
did watch my share. Some games were extremely exciting, and others were well boring.
Much of the madness comes from the broken brackets (the odds of picking a
perfect bracket are 9.2 quintillion)
lost time at work watching games (l love the “boss button” on the NCAA web
site), watching players do stupid things - they are only 18-20+ year old kids
what do you expect?, mistakes by referees, stupid fans, and annoying announcers
One of the best examples of the effects of March Madness was
found two years ago when 12 year old John Phillips
was caught on camera having a melt down
Northwester lost their game to Gonzaga.
John Phillips, the
Northwestern Crying Kid
One of the things I noticed this time was I never heard
coaches or players make excuses or blame others for their loss. Maybe I just
did not see the right interviews, but I did not see any. I was especially
impressed by Bruce Pearl, the coach of Auburn, after their 1-point loss to
Texas Tech in their semi-final game. During a post-game interview, the
interviewer seemed to be trying to get the coach to blame the referee for their
loss and he would not do it, taking full responsibility for Auburn’s loss. I
also never hear any of the players during the tournament take credit for their
victories but instead included the entire team in the win. I like the class the
players and coaches showed this year.
This weekend was not only the semi finals for the NCAA Men’s
Division I Tournament, but it was also the 189th
conference of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. These two events
seem to come at the same time every year. I would have like to have been a fly
on the wall in the room where the presiding authorities were discussing which
conference they would have the priesthood meetings and which one would have the
general women’s meetings. It seems the sisters won the discussion because they
get to stay home and watch the semi final games while the brethren of the
church attend the general priesthood session. If you want to see my solution to
this problem check out one of my past blogs from April 1, 2017 “Historic
Agreement between the LDS Church and the NCAA
” (yes, it was an April Fools
Sessions from general conference had some great advice on
how to find peace in the madness of the world around us. Here are a few thoughts
that impressed me:
Becky Craven, 2nd
Counselor in the General Young
Women’s Presidency said there is a casual way to live the gospel of Jesus Christ
and there is a careful way to live it. We should not live it casually. There is
no right way to not live the gospel of Jesus Christ.
Brook P. Hales, of the Seventy, reminded us that sometimes
our prayers are answered quickly and in the way we want. Sometimes they are not
answered immediately or in the way we expect and sometimes they are not
answered at all in this life. We must have faith to know the answers will eventually
President Eyring, 2nd
Counselor in the First Presidency,
warned us of the pattern of decline of the people after the Savior visited the
people in America and they then experienced almost 200 years of peace and
prosperity. The signs of decline are:
– no longer having their goods in common
He said that increasing our faith in Jesus Christ and his
servants is the best way to counter act a society that is in decline.
Sharon L. Eubank
Counselor in the General Relief Society Presidency, said that
Satan is trying hard to isolate us and cut us off from the source of light and
wants us to think that we are the only ones that are experiencing difficulties.
If we feel our flame of testimony fluttering, have faith that Christ’s light
will sustain us. He is the source of truth and light.
D. Todd Christofferson,
of the Quorum of Twelve Apostles, said that we must do all we can to end suffering
and prepare for the time when suffering will be done away when the Savior,
Jesus Christ comes again.
of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles, said that our testimony in Jesus Christ
is our greatest defense again evil.
President Russell M. Nelson, president of the church, spoke
in the priesthood session about the importance of repentance, that it is not a
one thing and done situation. Repentance is not an event; it is a process. We
need to prayerfully seek to know what is stopping us from repenting and fix it.
In his Sunday address he said that salvation is an individual matter, but exaltation
is a family matter. If we want to have the opportunity to be with our family
fall all eternity; pay the price now!
Anyone that knows me, will agree that I love everything
about March Madness, at least the NCAA tournament, but I do not like that
madness in the world around us. It seems that this madness is growing at an ever-increasing
rate. Watching the sessions of general conference of The Church of Jesus Christ
of Latter-day Saints helps me find peace in March (and other times of the year)
Madness around us. The peace that the Savior Jesus Christ can give is the only
answer for the wickedness in today’s world. We can have peace now and hope that
when the Savior does return the madness will end forever. Until then at least
we can enjoy the madness found in March and the NCAA Tournament.
Your questions and comments are welcome.