It has been quite a few busy weeks that involved a round trip to Ottawa on Saturday and preaching during a Sunday church service (yes, I was surprised too when I was asked to do it). All this time I was thinking about what I would be writing about on this week’s blog. I had a vague idea, but I did not know how to formulate it.
That was until I received a message on Facebook from a friend asking me to speak at an upcoming event in January. The topic of my presentation would be “The Moment that Defined Your Life”. The person who sent me the invitation did not know that I had been thinking about the same topic days prior to her message.
It all started when I was at a Toronto Raptors game. I have been reporting on the games for almost two months now, but I am still in awe every time I am at the arena. I can’t believe this is happening to me. I have been in rooms with childhood idols, biggest stars of the game, coaches, reporters, you name it. And every time I am saying “wow”. The other day, movie star and comedian Chris Tucker was standing at a few feet away from me. I almost looked around to see if Jackie Chan was in the room. It has been quite unbelievable, and I am not taking this for granted at all. I am so grateful.
So many opportunities have come my way the last few months that took my breath away. My friend Elvis asked me the other day: “what prayer did you pray at the beginning of this year? “. I laughed and answered to him “I guess God has seen all the struggles I have been through for years and thought that it was enough for now”.
As I was waiting for the Raptors game to start, going over my notes, a thought came to me. “How come I am here?” I asked myself. What really lead to this fortunate event for me? I couldn’t really figure out the exact moment that triggered everything. As I kept thinking, the memory of my late friend Fidèle Nsengiyunva kept coming back.
Fidèle was the cousin of my childhood best friends, and we grew up playing Basketball together. He had such a sense of humour that all of us had great time being around him.
Many years later, Fidèle became my neighbour. One day, he told me that he had started coaching a ladies Basketball team. I thought it was one of his usual jokes. I had to go and see it in person to believe it. The first time I went to watch him train the team, my whole purpose of me being there was to laugh at him.
Long story short, I ended up being the Head Coach of the same ladies’ team and won over 15 trophies in less than 7 years. If it hadn’t been me wanting to laugh at my friend Fidèle, there is no way I would have been at the Raptors game (many years later).
Coaching Basketball had opened so many doors for me (including landing my dream job of a sport reporter), that almost every success I have encountered in my life can be credited to coaching Basketball (including overcoming struggles).
However, going to the Basketball court to have fun at the expense of my friend Fidèle was never considered as a defining moment in my life, the day it happened. Now I know that it was. It is only looking back that we are able to connect the dots.
The lesson I have learned from this, is that there is no ordinary moment. Every second that we are alive is a defining moment. If we see life through those lenses, life becomes an unfolding miracle, at every moment (I think I just earned a PhD in Philosophy with this one).
Thank you Fidèle for being in my life. I will be forever thankful to you, and I know that I will see you on the other side. May you Rest in Peace.
Moral of the story? Do you want to live amazing moments? Go out and laugh at your friends, and you will be at an NBA game
Always a pleasure