The fundamentals of shooting a basketball are simple. You bend the knees, shoot with one hand guided by the other, and snap your wrist as your shoot the ball; the results should include a nice arch, good ball rotation, and a gentle shot that is centered between the edges of the rim. Putting all together under pressure, especially when you know your teammates are depending on you, is not quite so simple.
If you watch people practice or play, it is easy to notice that most shots do not have the arch, rotation, and aim required. As it is easy to deduce, most shots do not go in! Whitney is determined to learn the fundamentals in her way.
Early in the morning, and after school she is out practicing her shot. She is standing a thirty feet away, straight on to the basket, in the neighbor’s yard; determined to get it all together. Shot after shot followed by even more shots until her arm is so fatigued that the shots are consistently short can be heard echoing through the neighborhood. There is a home-court advantage with the backboard (slightly dead and forgiving), so she does not count shots made that way. Misses do not matter, just completions. During the last thirty-six hours I think her count is six hits in total, three yesterday, capped by two in a row from the free throw line as an extra bonus.
As she shoots, she enjoys the moment while musing about the fundamentals. The freedom of her efforts is just as clear as is her knowledge that by doing things within certain parameters will increase her success. She is learning to remember.
God has given you and I the fundamentals of living life to the max. Everything is there, waiting for us to practice, live, and remember! Solomon went through life trying to live outside of the fundamentals. In the end, he wrote “write it [God’s teaching] on the back of your hands; etch it on the chambers of our heart.” (Proverbs 7.3)
Today I remember, practice and live.