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All Posts By Bryan Kennedy



There are so many analogies rooted in trees.
The Bible alone talks about the Tree of Life 10 times.
We use the tree for a wide range of things both in analogies and realities; climbing, fire wood, paper, shade, landmarks, rope swings, postcards, framing houses, log cabins, fruit, and on and on.
Any of my close friends would tell you that I love trees!  I don’t think I have ever hugged one (another analogy) but, I have sat under many believing what I have read about the Native American Indian’s belief that sitting under the oldest tree in the forest will bring you the greatest wisdom.
(I love the book “The Education of Little Tree”)
I have been blessed to see the fall colors of Maple’s and Oak’s in the Tennessee hills and mountains growing up… and now seeing the Palm Tree’s on the beach.
One of my favorite places we toured (The Garth Brooks World Tour) was Sacramento, California, which has the largest tree canopy in the US and third-largest in the world!
40 Acres covering 12 city blocks and containing vegetation from nearly every ‘corner’ of the globe!

Okay Okay.  To the Chalk Talk point.

Two Trees
Scoot up and listen up.
Let’s just focus on the two trees that can be found anywhere.

The Reality Tree & The Dream Tree.
The two most important trees ever.
One grows no matter what; That being the Reality Tree.
The Dream Tree is very very different.  It takes a lot more care, tending, planning… and time.  But… The Dream Tree is worth it all!

The little chalk talk secret here is this;
Use the reality tree (the one that grows on it’s own)  to support your dream tree.
How does one do that?
Climb the reality tree. Climb it. Don’t watch it grow.  GROW WITH IT!
And as you climb, you will dream!
Your focus on grabbing each and every branch will merge with new thoughts turning to dreams;
I wonder if there is another way to get up this tree”? “I bet if I did this, or tried this, or I wonder if, maybe if I“?
This causes you to occasionally to look down at the dream tree you planted…  and low and behold… you can see a dream sprout!
It excites you and motivates you!
You watch it grow and grow!
You don’t forget it, in fact you think of it more while you still are holding to the Reality Tree.
You do not abandon it, reject or neglect it.
You believe in it due to seeing it grow as you continue to WORK climbing the reality tree. Slowly..  but surely your dream starts to grow!  And, soon it’s branches are reaching over nearer your reality tree’s branches! They touch and intertwine.
Your dream becomes big enough and strong enough to let go your grip and jump from the branch of your reality tree grabbing hold a branch from your dream tree and it grows as you climb!

While climbing your dream tree, make sure to pay attention to your reality tree, notice it’s branches growing near your dream tree, reaching across keeping pace in size and strength.
Recognize this as the support your dream tree needs to continue to grow.
Your reality tree will forever be strong and solid, there is no changing your reality tree.  That’s okay.  That’s healthy. Use it!
At times you will need to jump back to the branches of your reality tree.  And times you cannot afford to let go, keep climbing.
You will need the solid feel and support from it’s truth and roots.
While there, tend to your dream tree.  Grow it, stronger and stronger.
Then… you guessed it; Jump back over on your dream tree and CLIMB once again!
Back and forth, back and forth.

This is a sure Chalk Talk way to get to the top of your dreams! And that is reality.



Not because you must, but because you are willing.


Eat Twice a Day


Alright scoot up and listen up.

As athletes we need to pay extra attention to what we eat.
We get very specific about how we fuel and re-fuel our bodies.  We base our nutrition according to what type of things we do daily per our sport, position, or event.  We need all the help we can get, right?

And, for those of you who follow the Chalk Talk Blog and Podcast, you are well aware that we are not only concerned about our on the field or court performance, we believe that our off the field and court LIFE greatly effects ALL Win’s and Losses.

No one here is claiming to be a sports nutritionist, but strongly believe, as well as recommend, that we at least eat Twice a Day!

Once for the belly.
Once for the soul.

Feed that belly!  YES!
Plenty of resources for feeding the athlete’s belly;
General good stuff here!

Feed the soul.  You Bet!
Plenty of resources for feeding the soul;

Book of Proverbs
Jesus Calling (get the app for your phone)
The Athlete’s Devotional
FCA- Life Trainer App
Chalk Talk Vol. 1
The Chalk Talk Blog
The Chalk Talk Podcast

The dinner bell rings for both the belly and the soul.
“Come and Get it”!


Not because you must, but because you are willing.






Use It

Bring it in… scoot up and pay attention.
See this dude here… the one holding the umbrella?
Let’s talk about him and the obvious things we see about his condition and situation;

1.  It’s obvious it’s raining.
As a matter of fact, we could say it’s pouring.

2. We can also note that this guy is prepared… right?
This person has obviously been given a gift, a tool.. therefore this qualifies him as gifted. He has an Umbrella!

Okay. Still, there’s obviously something very wrong with this picture?

1. We’ve established that this person has the wherewithal to be prepared.
2. They even have the ability to recognize potential obstacle’s.
3. They have been given a gift that is specific and perfect for this situation.

The Chalk Talk Board Point;
This person is not using their GIFT to it’s best or strongest potential!

Everyone needs to realize that we ALL have been given a gift!
And… if we do not use this gift and use it in the right / best way, (just like this guy on the Chalk Talk Board)  what good is it?

Pay attention to what has been given to you and how to use it, or you will find yourself under a dark cloud wondering why it seems to be raining on you as you stand holding an umbrella getting soaked and wet.
Do you know what your gift is or your gifts are?
Do you know what it is but you are not sure you are using it the right way, in the best way, for the right purpose?

Get Coached.

Get the most out of your gift, and see what happens!


Not because you must, but because you are willing.

1 Corinthians 12: 14-27


College Football LIFE

College Football Season is officially starting today!
We are aware that High School Football has already a couple of weeks under it’s belt, and I personally have been to a couple of games… and it still remains fresh and alive to me as ever.  What a great great time in a young man’s life.

There are many differences between High School Football and College Football.
I could go into many of them, but for this blog post I choose to give a Chalk Talk more concentrated on our main goal here… Life Off the Field.

So, with that in mind, what are the differences between High School and College Football off the field?

Little to no Parental Oversight
No one to wake you up – No one to make you go to class

Living away from home; Freshman… their first time on their own.
If on Scholarship (you can’t work for money) there is no way to make money… so BROKE
LONG LONG HARD HARD hours of work/ called practice
Travel so you miss classes/Fall behind in school work

Free meals

Clean practice uniforms
Clean game uniforms

These are just a few of the obvious differences.

What about social life… Real Life?

No Money.. so where / how do you get money?

Who is coaching these areas?

As always we ask all our Chalk Talkies to watch these games with great enthusiasm while taking great notice of what the commentators offer in the way of covering LIFE OFF THE FIELD.

A successful LIFE off the field increases your chances tremendously for Success in the Wins and Losses Column!
Get Coached OFF the field!
We can work on it!


Not because you must, but because you are willing.


Sluggard or Plow?



Proverbs 20:4  Sluggards do not plow in season;
    so at harvest time they look but find nothing.


noun slug·gard \ ˈslə-gərd \

: a habitually lazy person

Just saying this word aloud kind of makes you know the definition without knowing the definition, right?
For certain it sounds like something you do not wish to be called, labeled or associated with.
Words associated with Sluggard;
 idler · loafer · good-for-nothing · wastrel · drone · scrounger · cadger · ne’er-do-well · do-nothing · layabout · slob · lounger · shirker · sluggard · laggard · slugabed · malingerer · rogue · rascal · scoundrel · villain · waster · loser · skiver · slacker · lazybones 


noun \ ˈplau̇ \

: an implement used to cut, lift, and turn over soil especially in preparing a seedbed

Consider yourself as the implement and what you must do / be to prepare for growing.

Words associated with Plow;
cultivate · till · work · furrow · turn up

I was looking at this verse Proverbs 20:4 and considering it as a close parallel to a sporting season?
Obviously, it refers to work.  Working to plow, dig, hoe, plant, seed untilled ground so that it might grow a crop and bring you a harvest (reward) months later.
Why would this not be true for a football, soccer, basketball, baseball, hockey season, or any other sport?
PLOW; applied in the athletic-competition sense; is the work we put in BEFORE the season.
The HARVEST;  the result we get after each game DURING the season and the final completion of our season.

No matter which season you are in right now… PLOW or plan to plow for the next season!

Plow = Make it happen.
Sluggard = Watch it happen, and later say; “What happened?”


Not because you must, but because you are willing.






Hebrews 10:24
24 And let us consider how we may spur one another on toward love and good deeds

I try to run daily.
Running has always been a time of listening to music, podcast, Louis L’amour books, prayer and self reflection.
The other day I was about to run and noticed a rubber/silicone bracelet my friends at my local bike shop (Robins Bikes and Fittness )had given me honoring their friend who had suddenly passed. They told me his story… their story.
He was a very inspiring and an amazing man. His name was Laray.
How many of us receive these bracelets and perhaps never put much thought into them after we get them? No guilt intended here… we all we are very busy and we cannot remember, nor give pause to every request or need.
But, still… I try to run daily?
So, I felt led to put the bracelet on they gave me and run…and while I did… I thought of Laray and his story. I prayed for his family and friends.
You know what? When I knew it was too hot to run and it would be easier to just finish my 3.3 mile run… walking the last 1/2 mile or so.
Instead, thinking and knowing I was running for Laray… I kept going!
This needs to be said;
This is NOT a donation oriented idea, fund them, fund me, fund anyone.. this is not in anyway dealing with anything monetary!
This is very simple.
We all can take a normal activity out of our day and do it/use it thinking/praying, being inspired by someone else!
That said.. for me… Should you have a bracelet like one of these and you would like to send it my way? Send it to the address here including the story behind the bracelet. Thank you all.


Not because you must but because you are willing.


Push UP = Look UP


Alright… Bring it in. Scoot up. I want to talk to about push-ups!
 Why push ups?

Listen up! (that’s a good idea too.. listen UP… for a later blog)

For now… First let’s recognize that a push up is an exercise.
Exercise defined;
1 : regular or repeated use of a faculty or bodily organ
2 : bodily exertion for the sake of developing and maintaining physical fitness

a. regular
b. repeated
c. exertion
d. developing
e. maintaining

Push up defined;
A Push up: an exercise performed while lying with the face down by raising and lowering the body with the straightening and bending of the arms

a. lying face down
b. raising
c. straightening
d. bending

What is this Chalk Talk getting at?
People… we have to Push UP!
Every situation, problem, decision, encounter, task, job, practice, game, class, trial, tragedy, relationship.  We must push UP!
We often find ourselves flat on our face, lying face down…  hard to get lower than that right? Staying there is a long withering to your spirit and atrophy to your muscles.
When you find yourself in that position… Push UP!
The strength, the endurance, the help, the path, the way, the encouragement, the direction is always always UP.
The situations, conditions, circumstances will no doubt bend and straighten, and bend, straighten many many times, but with each.. we get stronger!

The exercise of pushing UP needs to be a regular exercise, it needs to be repeated, sometimes it will take great effort or exertion to raise up! It requires both straightening and bending!
But, this all develops habits and attitudes that maintain strength and endurance for every known and unknown situation.
You can do more… and more importantly… you can BE more if you Push UP.

What are we really saying here?

Simple… Push up = Look up

Psalm 32:8  I will instruct you and teach you in the way you should go;
    I will counsel you with my loving eye on you.

Philippians 4:8  Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things.


Not because you must, but because you are willing.




What Do You Want?

chalk talk what do people want

What do you want?

What do you really want?
Where is it your thoughts first turn too when asked this question?
Material things? Money? Boyfriend, Girlfriend? Starting position, undefeated season? Your child to start, play, score, win?

What if you ask yourself this question; What is it that satisfies you?
Does anything really satisfy you?  IF SO… for how long?  Does it fade? Does it depend upon others… their actions, reactions, response, words?

What do you really, really want?

How about trying this question instead; What motivates you?
Does anything motivate you? IF SO… how long do you stay motivated? Does your motivation fade with accomplishments? Victories? Defeats? Losses? How people/coaches/teammates react to you and your performance?

What do you really, really, really want?
This is a very important question.  Do not under-think this. Perhaps be encouraged to deeply think on this and see what it is you come up with.
Want to dig deep? Consider this … might take a while.

Ecclesiastes 4: 6
Better one handful with tranquillity than two handfuls with toil and chasing after the wind.

Whittle away at it… see what is at your core and challenge yourself to find out who you really are.
Knowing what you want will explain many things to yourself.  Mainly the why you do what you do, and why you don’t do what you don’t.
You might say that sounds simple or even silly?  Try it.

What do you want?
What satisfies you?
What motivates you?

Answer these honestly and your answers will tell you all about yourself.
What you think of you… and what others see in you.


Not because you must, but because you are willing.








It is your page.
Of course it is all about you.
What are you ALL about?

MATTHEW 6:21 For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.

Don’t lose your
self in yourself.
self is good.
self is ‘ish’.

 myself, oneself, self-confidence, self-conscious, self-contained, self-control, self-defense, self-determination, self-employed, self-esteem, self-evident, self-help, self-image, self-interest, self-portrait, self-proclaimed, self-sufficiency, self-sufficient, self-worth, selfish, selfishness, yourself, self-efficacy, self-concept, self-described, self-report


Not because you must, but because you are willing.


ONLY you can make the call

temptation chalk talk your call image

We all are tempted.
We all face temptation.
Let’s look at the root word defined by Webster’s Dictionary;

tempted; tempting; tempts
transitive verb
1 : to entice to do wrong by promise of pleasure or gain

Hey… Glad to recognize all temptation is not of Evil…  You can be tempted to eat a little more ice cream, right?
But, when it comes to what you know to be Right Vs. Wrong…  Temptation is usually not visiting you tempting you to do the right thing… right?

The most interesting thing I find about temptation is that it does not demand from us, it merely suggest.
It does not and cannot make us act, react, or cause us to do anything!
When temptation visits you it’s your chance to be the Coach, QB, man with the ball, puck,  or ?…  with seconds left, and it’s going down to the wire.  Often you have to act fast… in fact it’s best to act fast… just turn and flee.  Thinking while tempted usually turns out bad.
You..  only you can make the call.


1 Timothy Chapter 6

Not because you must, but because you are willing.