By Chad Bonham
Oklahoma City Thunder 2015-16 Season
As both a professional athlete and a coach, Monty Williams has experienced his fair share of adversity. He overcame a heart condition to make it to the NBA yet saw his career cut short due to chronic knee problems. Then, in his first opportunity as a head coach, he was fired after five years with the New Orleans Pelicans.
But nothing could prepare him for the devastation of losing his wife.
It was February 2016, during Williams’ tenure as assistant coach with the Oklahoma City Thunder, when news of Ingrid Williams’ fatal car accident sent shockwaves throughout the NBA community.
A few days later, Williams stood in front of 900 people—including their five children—to celebrate her life.
“This is hard for my family, but this will work out,” he told the crowd. “And my wife would punch me if I were to sit up here and whine about what is going on. That doesn’t take away the pain, but it will work out because God causes all things to work out. You just can’t quit. You can’t give in.”
The latter part of that statement was in reference to an oft-quoted New Testament verse.
“And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.” (Romans 8:28)
Williams also encouraged people to pray for the family of the other individual involved in the accident and invoked another Bible verse to promote a message of forgiveness. This was especially difficult due to the fact that it was the other driver who caused the wreck when her car lost control and swerved across two lanes.
“And we, as a group, brothers united in unity, should be praying for that family because they grieve as well,” Williams continued. “So let’s not lose sight of what’s important. In my house, we have a sign that says, ‘As for me and my house, we will serve the Lord.’ (Joshua 24:15). We cannot serve the Lord if we don’t have a heart of forgiveness.”
This devotional is brought to you by Museum of the Bible, a 430,000 square foot museum being constructed 3 blocks south of the US Capitol in Washington, D.C. and is set to open in November of 2017.
(Photos: Tony The Tiger; Keith Allison)