Mariano Rivera: The Sandman Exodus

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“Say your prayers little one…Don’t forget my son…To include everyone”

Inscribed on Mariano Rivera’s glove is the Bible passage Philippians 4:13, which states: “I can do all things through Christ, who strengthens me”. So much emphasis is often placed on the physical accomplishments to that of an athlete. We concentrate on the individual awards and his or her accomplishments and contributions to their respective sport. Often we look at their trophy cases as the means to measure greatness, as it relates to the past, present and future. Rarely are terms such as “once in a lifetime” or the “greatest of all time” tagged to the statutes of retired players, however, when it comes to Mariano Rivera, we can all but guarantee that these will be the words thrown at the feet of arguably the greatest closer in Major League Baseball history. His credentials and statistical numbers will cement his legacy in both the record books, in fandom and amongst his peers, however, I always feel that the true measure of a man is in the size of his heart. In life we can either choose to leave behind footprints to be followed in or leave behind plodding holes for others to fall into; the choice, speaks volumes about the character of the individual. In Mariano Rivera’s “walk of life” you will find the charitable footprints of a devout Christian, whose philanthropic endeavors have included building churches in Panama, New York, Mexico, California, Dominican Republic and Florida. He also started numerous foundations in an effort to help educate underprivileged youth and has built an elementary school in his native country Panama. Mariano Rivera proves that a high skill set is transferable on any level of life. This man, who has been placed into a multitude of pressure situations on the greatest stage in sports, while playing for the most storied franchise in sports lure, has excelled beyond any comparison when closing out opponents and leading his team to victory. Mariano has and will continue to exhibit this same innate ability off the field as well. The Metallica songs states “Don’t forget my son, to include everyone”. Strangely enough it mirrors Philippians 2:4 which states: “do not merely look out for your own personal interests, but also for the interests of others.” Mariano will be missed by Yankee fans and baseball fans abound, however, the Hall of Fame for Life, just gained a new inductee. Congratulations #42

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