I'm Coming Home
There are so many directions I could go with this. I could go spiritual and talk about James being the 'Prodigal Son', but I'll save that for the pastors. I could talk about how unwise of a basketball decision this was, but how brilliant of a decision this was for inner peace, solace, and maturity. I could talk about the comparison of the Cleveland Fans' reaction because they're waving their LBJ jerseys around proudly when just four years ago; they were burning them to the ground and creating shirts reading Quitness, Lyin King, Queen James and much more.
Right before he released that article on Friday regarding him returning to Cleveland, I told my coworker, "he would go back because he is a competitor. He is going to grow those guys there in Cleveland and get another ring or two." Old Skools will say he did it wrong because he hopped around, but I think they'll give him kudos for returning to Cleveland, his home. They'll also be able to say how he made those around him better. This decision to return was more about him as a man than the game of basketball. I also believe this move for the king will change the standard of loyalty as the NBA knows it; loyal to his home and loyal to his family.
Lebron James begins building the remainder of his legacy on the brick of FORGIVENESS.
There lies the main point of this post. In an interview sometime ago, LBJ even mentioned how powerful of a story it would be if he returned to Cleveland and guess what? We witnessed (pun intended) it happened with our very own eyes Friday afternoon. He even mentioned it in his letter featured on SI.com. James asked a POWERFUL question. He asked, "Who am I to hold a grudge?"
In my most humble opinion, I love the decision James made to return to Cleveland, but that's not what this piece is about. This piece is actually about many people not having the ability to move on to fulfill their legacy (or in this case...the rest of) becuase they won't forgive. Mmmm! I'm going to say that again because somebody read over that a little too fast.
MANY PEOPLE ARE NOT ABLE TO MOVE ON TO FULFILL THEIR LEGACY BECAUSE THEY WON'T FORGIVE.
Yes, we all saw the letter Dan Gilbert wrote. We all know the Cavaliers camp didn't remove the letter from the website until a few days prior to the deal being sealed with James. We all know the city burned jeserys. We all know the memes and foolish t-shirts were made mocking LBJ when he initially left. We get it. People misunderstand that about forgiveness. It is less beneficial to the wounder, but super beneficial for the wounded. I cannot imagine how difficult it was to be able to forgive them. Once he did this though, the weight that had been lifted from his shoulders was probably incredible.
So what's the takeaway? Don't let selfishness, pride, arrogance, or anything else keep you from forgiving someone. Forgiveness frees you from the bondage of others, bitterness, holding a grudge, and housing hatred in your heart.