Friday Night Lights? Clear Eyes. Full Hearts. Can’t Lose.

Guest Submission by Moira Crooks

One of my all-time favorite television shows was Friday Night Lights. It was a short lived take on a high school football team in small town Texas, based on the movie and book of the same name. The show touched on the lives and relationships, football and the people in the middle. The head coach, known by all in the town as Coach Taylor, ends his pre-game speech with the phrase, “Clear eyes, full hearts,” and the players finish, “Can’t lose!” When I first heard this, I have to say I was excited. It brought back that feeling right before a game. Granted I was a cheerleader, but the feeling is the same. There is something pure about it. To play with clear eyes is to play with a good attitude, removed from negative distractions. To play with full hearts means to give a complete effort and put your heart in to each game. We end with “can’t lose, because with a good attitude and a full effort, you have already won.Clear eyes. Full hearts. Can’t lose.

I get that same feeling when it comes to supporting Gov. Sarah Palin. She reminds me of Coach Taylor. He is the epitome of a leader, mentor, and friend. He calls it like he sees it. He cuts the crap, but he does not belittle his team. Gov. Palin is a straight-shooter in the political world. She gets right to the point. She doesn’t coddle us, hold our hands and tell us everything will be alright. She talks to us like adults. She respects us. She also sees what  America can be. She sees American exceptionalism as not just some lofty talking point but as something “We the People” can grasp and actually achieve. She puts the ball into our hands. Its not just her game, but our game. She knows that it will take all of us bringing our own unique talents to the effort to succeed.  In the TV series, Coach Taylor has the ability to envision his team’s victories—to hold those dreams in his heart—and then let go of any expectations. He does this because he knows that in order to succeed, we cannot live in the future, or as we so often do, in the past.

By living in the now—in what is real—we clearly see what we need to do at each and every moment because we see what is happening in reality. Clear eyes, full hearts can’t lose is about believing in yourself while paying attention. It’s about responding rather than reacting. Because when we react, our actions come from the past or the future. They come from the stories in our heads or the meaning we give to a potential outcomes. When we respond, however, our actions come from right now. They come from a place of consciousness and acceptance.

We supporters of Gov. Palin need to keep that idea in mind.  Lately people have been seeming to get upset, disappointed, and even crushed because she has not announced her run for the GOP nomination yet. We try predicting if she will run, when she will run, how she will announce. I have even read stories of people trying to determine that she is going to run based on what outfit she wore during an interview.  We are reacting to something in the future instead of grasping what is at hand right now. What is at hand right now is the chance to make a difference and get involved.  Stand up for the ideals Gov. Palin embodies right in this moment. Do something about America’s future now. Don’t wait for the last game of the season.

It’s scary to live in the now and not know what the future holds. It means we can’t just sit back and observe life passively anymore. We can’t wait for the day to come when someone or something will make our lives better. Suddenly, it’s about tonight’s game. We become the players, when before we were just the people in the stands. We get tossed around and beaten up and tackled, but we trust that our gear will keep us safe. We trust that our coaches and teammates know what they’re doing. We trust that we’ve practiced hard enough, and that we’ll be able to take down the next 250 lb gut check that comes our way. And then we play the game like our lives are at stake—because we know that they are. We need to get out of our comfort zones and step out in faith when it comes to getting our country back. We need to make our voices heard and trust that Gov. Palin knows what she is doing. We have to prepare, practice, and make certain that when the big game comes, we can take down the permanent political class and restore America to greatness.

It’s Friday Night in America.  Its time to get onto the field and play all four quarters of this game. Not next week’s game tonight. Not the championship game tonight. This game. We are going to need to trust that our Coach will handle the rest. One play at a time.  Clear eyes. Full hearts. Can’t lose.



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