Dr. James Dobson told Liberty University students on Monday that if you give it enough time, “life will trash your trophies,” cautioning them not to focus on earthly accomplishments but on Resurrection day.
In front of the student body during the university’s weekly convocation in Lynchburg, Virginia, the 80-year-old best-selling author and former president of Focus on the Family spoke on the same topic he had spoken about at an LU commencement ceremony 23 years ago.
In his remarks, Dobson recounted that when he was 18 years old, he dreamed of seeing his name on a tennis trophy in the trophy case at Point Loma Nazarene University, the school where he earned his first degree.
His dream was ultimately realized and his name was engraved on that tennis trophy. But 15 years after that accomplishment he received a phone call from a friend who told him that he had found that trophy in the dumpster behind one the university’s administration buildings. The friend refurbished the trophy and made sure Dobson got it.
As he showed off his prized possession to the students, Dobson said: “What I learned from that was a very valuable less. I learned that if you live long enough, life will trash your trophies. I don’t care what they are, whatever your accomplishments, whatever you think is the most important thing you’ve done. Sooner or later, it won’t matter.”
Look no further for an example of this, Dobson continued, than the recent Olympic Games.
“How many of you have ever heard of Bobby Morrow?” he asked the students. No one responded.
Morrow was once the fastest sprinter in the world, who broke track and field world records in the 1950s. Now all of the talk is about Jamaican Usain Bolt, who has won gold medals in the 100-meter and 200-meter races for the past three summer Olympic games. Dobson further noted that when he asked students at Abilene Christian University, Morrow’s alma mater, how many of them had known about Morrow, no one had heard of him.
“Who cares now who won the race for the Senate in New Jersey in 1948?” Dobson asked. “Who cares who won the World Series in 1933? It doesn’t matter. It was long ago and it has been forgotten.”