by Anna Walker


The moniker, March Madness, is the time of the annual NCAA college basketball tournament. Die hard fans (of which I am not one) from across the country go wild for their teams.  They are committed from the beginning of the season to the end, spending thousands of dollars on bets, paraphernalia, tickets, travel, and accommodations for the big games. If their team wins the national championship, they are victorious, if they lose, they sink to the depths of despair, as if it were the loss of a loved one. The frenzy and chaos surrounding these games creates sheer "madness".  

We are all in a tournament game of sorts. This tournament of life can be rigorous, tedious and strenuous, but is can also be victorious.  Opponents like illness, financial setbacks and loss challenge us to see what we are made of.

As we end the month of March today, we are approaching the end of the first quarter of the year next month.  As in a game, when the quarter in the game ends, the team assesses what it has done well, gets a feel for how the other team plays and creates strategies to ensure its success.  During the game, there can be many interruptions that cause the game to stop- fouls, violations and time outs.  However, the  "clock" in the tournament of life keeps ticking- despite cancer, debt, and the loss of a loved one. We press on.  

This is a pivotal time in life.  I am encouraged to keep the momentum going, continually assess what is working and what is not, and disallow interruptions to distract me. I am determined to stay focused, stay on target and stay in the game.  

As of this post, I am facing the illness of a close family member who has cancer. To watch his health decline daily is difficult, yet he is determined to fight and remain valiant, knowing that whether he is healed on this side, or the other side, he is victorious. In the madness of his illness, he has found a strategy to win,  and he already has.