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The Bird’s Nest By Robin Carter – GOD’S FAVOR – The Biography of Jamar Smith


Jamar Smith colorSometimes you may not feel up to the fight, but hold on, keep strong, the battle is not up to you. Just remember that at the end of the day the favor of God, will open up the way. Some may think that favor is not fair, but it is something that perhaps many would love to accomplish. You may question, what is the favor of God and how can I get it? Well, I am glad you asked? My best definition of the word favor is a “demonstrated delight” in something or someone. The favor of God can be described as tangible evidence that a person has the approval of the Lord. We usually favor those people who also favor us. In that same since God shows favor to the one who delights in, connects with, and gives honor to Him.

Isaiah 66:2 says, “these are the ones I love on with favor; those who are humble and contrite in spirit and who tremble at my word. For the eyes of the Lord run to and fro throughout the whole earth, to show Himself strong on behalf of them whose heart is perfect toward Him. To be “perfect” toward Him means we seek His favor more than we seek the favor of anyone else, even ourselves. God seeks out those who love Him and His commands so that He can bless, guide, and protect them (Psalm 37:23, Proverbs 3:5-6). This does not mean that everyone who is prosperous or healthy has favor with God, nor does it mean that those whom the Lord favors will not suffer difficulties.

Many people in the Bible had the Lord’s favor but also suffered hardship (2nd Corinthians 6:4, Acts 14:22, 20:23; 1st Peter 2:19). Certain heroes such as Noah, Moses, Daniel and Mary were favored of the Lord, but they struggled with difficulties like anyone else. Those favored of God know that He is with them and that nothing can happen to them apart from His good purpose (Romans 8:28). They have His ear as they walk through dark valleys and know that their struggle to remain true to Him will not go unrewarded.

This summary precisely mirrors or shall I say explains why the life of young and courageous basketball star Jamar Smith endured such difficulties throughout a portion of his life. He is the grandson of the Vice Chief Bishop Leroy Smith Jr. and the “wonderful” lady Salmena Smith, and the son of Felicia Smith Campbell. Jamar played for Illinois in the season of early 2005-2006 which played in the NCAA National Championship competition. Soon after that they lost a junior guard to the NBA and Smith was the perfect candidate for that position. He became the fifth highest Illinois scorer that year appearing in 32 of 33 games and became a “Big Ten” in the All Freshman team selection.

In 2006-2007 Smith suffered an ankle sprain; this resulted in a nearly two-year absence from college basketball. He later became a member of Southern Indiana ‘Screaming Eagles’ which was a slow start, but soon he was back into the swing of things. Smith later endured some difficulties involving alcohol and a terrible car accident that left another person seriously injured. There were consequences served due to this. Smith experienced a few other dark moments in his career life as well. His grandfather (Leroy Smith) referred to this situation as the “worm stage” of his life, meaning that he was not fully developed at that time, but later bloomed into a beautiful butterfly. “Metamorphosis” is the name used for a rapid transformation of a larva into an adult that occurs as some insects. The butterfly goes through four stages to become an adult butterfly, this process is called “metamorphosis.” This stage took place with Smith as he transformed from his adolescent stage to an adult man. He realized how fortunate he was to have a second chance and was forthcoming in his mistakes and had remorse for his errors in judgement calls. Smith is now playing professional basketball for Unicaja Malaga (Spain).

I just want to take a moment to congratulate Jamar for his great accomplishments and success throughout his basketball seasons. And may God continue to keep His hand in yours as you walk through this thing called life. Be proud of who you are, because who you are as a person is far more important than what you are as a basketball player.

After winning the French League Championship with the Limoges this summer, Smith was named to the All-French Pro A 2nd Team and All-Imports Team. Jamar Smith states “I would like to thank the entire Limoges CSP organization, teammates, and fans for an amazing Championship season. “This was one of the most memorable seasons of my career in which I have memories that will last a lifetime. While I’m not returning to Limoges next season I will always be extremely grateful for the year I spent here. Merci!

Recently, Jamar has become a happily married man and has one son. I believe that Jamar truly has the favor of God on his life. All of the spiritual teachings given to him by his parents and grandparents have made a large impact on his life. The Bible states, “train up a child in how he should go and when he’s/she’s old will not depart from it. Blessed are those who find wisdom, and the one who gains the understanding for he/she is more profitable than silver and yields better returns than gold (Proverbs 3:13-14). God’s favor, believe it, achieve it.