Forgive me for name-dropping but I wanted to let you know what a great young Christian man I’ve become acquainted with. His name is Kyle Korver and if you are even a casual fan of the Utah Jazz you’ve likely heard about this 6’6″, handsome, single, Christian, NBA star. Pastor Sergio Romero and I had a chance to visit with Kyle over lunch this week and between the small bands of adoring young ladies requesting pictures we had a chance to hear a bit of his story. He was born in the Los Angeles area of California but ended up in Iowa where his parents still live today. His father is an evangelical pastor with a growing church in a town of only about 10,000 people. That’s exciting! His NBA career started 5 years ago at Philadelphia where he thought he would be for some time until the team traded him to Utah a couple of seasons ago. From what I could tell he was a bit put-off by that and even wondered what God’s plan was in sending him to Utah of all places! I can relate to that! Upon his arrival here he wanted to get into a local church for “accountability” and “fellowship” (imagine that!!) and just an opportunity to worship with people who shared his love for Jesus, faith, and family. It turns out that somebody from K2 The Church found out about Kyle coming to Salt Lake and called and invited him. For Kyle it seemed providential especially since his nickname is “K2”. Perhaps God was working? Now when he isn’t practicing on Sundays he is a regular worshiper at the church.
Kyle had never heard of Seventh-day Adventists until his encounter with Sergio and I, and was only familiar with our unique Saturday worship (which really isn’t unique!) We had a little bit of time to share with him a more about the history and the current state of the Seventh-day Adventist Church.
Kyle was down to earth, casual, very cool, and very likable. Even under the lights and fame of playing in the NBA I can see that he is serious about being a Christian. But what impressed me the most was that he exhibited a spiritual maturity well beyond his 27 years.
I’m excited to have Kyle with us this Sabbath during our special emphasis on Christian Education and young people. I have no reservations at all about having him talk about what it’s like to be a Christian in the NBA and how he attempts live out his trust in Jesus in front of multi-millionaires on a regular basis. I think our students and adults will hear something that challenges them. I think that Kyle will be encouraging to all of us attempting to live out our faith in whatever context we find ourselves in. I hope you’ll take the time to come and hear what he has to say.