I remember the day when PBR stud, Wiley Petersen got jerked down and mauled around by his bull in Bilings, Montana. A lot went through my head as I was intimately aware of how important that particular ride was at that time in his career – not to mention it looked like it really hurt! He was able to get to his feet and walk out of the arena, and I met him at the out gate concerned and said, “How ya holden up champ?” He put a great big smile on his face and said, “I still got my teeth and I’m still going to heaven!” A few years later, in that same arena, he would set a career highlight and an arena record by conqering the the infamous bull “Little Yellow Jacket” .
How do you keep hope when you fail? In the sport of bull riding, even if your among the elite, you fail an average of 50% of the time. Imagine spending nearly every dime you have to get to a competition and you only have 8 seconds to earn your paycheck. Talk about pressure! Then, instead of winning, you get beat up and need to go home knowing it will be another week before you get your next shot at making money.
Although there are lots of ways to deal with these type of pressure in life, I use Wiley as an example because I believe it’s the way of the Kingdom of Jesus. He wasn’t afraid to maintain hope in a huge dream, while in the midst of failure. And the way he kept moving forward – was by keeping an eternal perspective.
When you realize your eternal life began the day you became a son/daughter of God, the pressures of this earthly life won’t overwhelm you. Faith, Hope and Love become the belief system that keeps everything else in perspective.
Wiley is a hero to thousands because he was a stud bull rider, but He had eternal impact on the planet because he demonstrated Faith, Hope and Love throughout his career.