This morning two of my favorite leaders got together for a breakfast discussion attended by over 300 coaches, athletes and other men.  Mike Linch, the incredible senior pastor of NorthStar Church and host of the Linch With A Leader podcast, hosted Jason Romano, host of the Sports Spectrum podcast and author of the new book Live To Forgive.

For 17 years, Jason was a Senior Manager and Producer at ESPN.  He created and produced content for shows such as SportsCenter, Monday Night Football, Mike and Mike in the Morning, Sunday NFL Countdown, College Gameday, and MLB’s All Star Game.

But most important, Jason absolutely LOVES Jesus Christ!!!

In Live to Forgive, Jason walks readers through his personal journey of forgiving his alcoholic father.  Through sharing his own story, Romano invites readers to enter into their own messy journeys of forgiveness-to fully feel their pain, evaluate their pain, transform their pain, and ultimately forgive those who caused their pain.  The only route to freedom and peace is forgiveness.

The following are 42 Leadership Quotes And Lessons On Forgiveness From Jason Romano:

  1. For more than 30 years I couldn’t forgive my dad for the hurt and pain and all that came with his struggle with alcoholism.
  2. Ephesians 4:31-21 – “Let all bitterness and wrath and anger and clamor and slander be put ways from you, along with all malice. Be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another as Christ forgave you.”
  3. When someone hurts us our natural reaction is to get vengeance… to fight back.
  4. My dad was a loud drunk. He liked to talk when he was drinking and good things did not come out of his mouth.
  5. “We all agree that forgiveness is a beautiful idea, until we have to practice it.” – C.S. Lewis
  6. Matthew 18:21-22 – “Then Peter came to Him and asked, ‘Lord, how often should I forgive someone who sins against me? Seven times?’ “No, not seven times,’ Jesus replied.  ‘But seventy times seven.’”
  7. I got serious about my faith in 2001.
  8. We all mess up. We all say stupid things.  But Christ said forgiveness is available to everyone if you ask for it.  So how could we not forgive our brother and sister.
  9. My dad was not at any of my biggest moments.
  10. I had no clue how to be a father. I just knew I wanted to be the opposite of my dad.
  11. God hates unforgiveness.
  12. Unfogiveness spreads like a disease. And all three of my brothers hated my dad.
  13. We are wired to want justice. We want revenge.
  14. When we forgive we’re not letting other people off the hook.
  15. Forgiveness is for yourself. When we choose to forgive, we’re releasing that anger and malice from us.  It’s about us, not the other person, when we choose to forgive.
  16. “To forgive is to set a prisoner free and discover that the prisoner was you.”
  17. Unforgiveness is like drinking poison and hoping the other person dies.
  18. When we choose to forgive we’re never more like Jesus.
  19. Does my dad love this pit of despair he has put himself in? My answer is “No.”
  20. For the first time in my life I had empathy for my father. – (When he attempted suicide.)
  21. I heard a man who was so broken and so lifeless and at the end of his rope.
  22. Dad, I forgive you of what you’ve done and what you’ve been through. I forgive you for everything that happened.
  23. When you forgive someone it doesn’t always mean reconciliation will immediately happen.
  24. There are times you need to setup boundaries to protect yourself and your family.
  25. My dad hasn’t had a drink since he entered the hospital. He’s been sober almost five years.
  26. My dad came to the book release party wearing his Cardinals shirt.
  27. When I forgave my dad I have up a bitter past. It’s about moving forward.
  28. There is a happy ending. I’m glad I can tell you he’s alive, he’s around.
  29. When I forgave my dad I made that choice knowing he may never stop drinking.
  30. By the grace of God he stopped drinking.
  31. We must forgive because Christ forgives us every single day. If we don’t we’re hypocrites.
  32. Forgiveness is available to all of you if you ask.
  33. “I firmly believe a great many prayers are not answered because we are not willing to forgive someone.” – D.L. Moody
  34. You never know what the Lord will do when you choose to forgive.
  35. “If this book can help one person you need to write it.” – Jason’s dad
  36. My dad, I’m in awe of him now where he is at. He is a walking miracle in my eyes.
  37. We don’t ever put ourselves in the position of the other person.
  38. The first thing Darryl Strawberry ever says to me is, “How is your dad?”
  39. This man (Tony Dungy) treated every single person the same.
  40. He (Coach Dungy) showed me you can be quiet and gentle and still be manly.
  41. So many young people struggle with identity… I encourage young athletes your identity is never found in what you do. Your identity is found in who you are in Christ.
  42. You’re loved and cherished and valued no matter what you do.

Absolutely amazing, life-changing, freeing thoughts from Jason!!!  Thanks Mike and NorthStar for putting on this incredible event!  If you have not picked up a copy of Jason’s book yet, do so TODAY by clicking HERE.


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