Friday, September 16, 2011

The Sacred Acre: The Ed Thomas Story

What a great story! I had never heard of Ed Thomas before reading this book, but I am glad I know him now. What an amazing man who left an amazing legacy.

Coach Thomas was an inspiring high school football coach who developed a winning program at a small high school in Iowa. His goal was not to win games but to make a difference in the lives of the athletes he coached telling his players "If all I have taught you is how to block and tackle, then I have failed you as a coach."

When his town was hit by a tornado, Coach Thomas was the driving force behind the rebuilding efforts. He promised to have the football field ready to play the first home game 105 days after the tornado hit. The field was ready, and the team went on to a winning season. Unfortunately, the story does not have a happy ending. A year later, tragedy hit the town again when Coach Thomas was murdered by a former player. His legacy lives on in the lives of many including his family, his friends, and the many players who were lucky enough to call him Coach.

Ed Thomas lived by the words, "take pride in what you do." I am impressed that he was the maintenance staff for his football field dubbed the Sacred Acre. He seeded it, mowed it, line it, and on the morning after a game, he was there filling in the divots. He was the coach who spent Friday night after the big game washing the team uniforms, taking the time to scrub out the grass stains.

I am so grateful for the Thomas family for sharing this story with us. I look forward to sharing this book with my own family with the hope that we take to heart Coach Thomas's words "take care of the little things, and the big things will take care of themselves."

Zondervan had provided me a free copy of this book in exchange for this review which I freely give.

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