Imagine this: A high school teacher in Union City, N.J., receives a call. He’s asked to lead a chapel service for the New York Giants the night before their 2011 Christmas Eve game against the New York Jets.
On Dec. 23, Gian Paul Gonzalez stands before the team, who face tough odds of making the playoffs, and hands each player a poker chip. He asks them to write their initials on one side and their number or a top commitment on the other side. The team pushes the chips to the center of the table.
“Sometimes we’ve got to step up and be all in,” Gonzalez tells the group. “You have to be willing to say, ‘I’m going to be all in and risk everything and bet everything.’”
A Champion Attitude
Gonzalez, a former All-American forward, who passed up a professional basketball contract to continue his work with at-risk youth, urged the players to fully commit to anything they take on, whether as a father, husband, son or even, a football player.
Just two words — all in — served as a rally cry. The next day, the Giants beat the Jets 29-4. The Giants kept winning and went on to be the Super Bowl XLVI champs, beating the New England Patriots 21-17.
Invitation To Learn
Gonzalez is quick to downplay his role in the Giants’ wins, but it’s evident his message of hope and dedication was heard. He’s an inspiration himself; he founded Hope + Future, an organization using physical fitness to share a message of hope in inner-city public schools and juvenile jails.
Are you ready to be inspired by Gonzalez? Join us at Farm Journal Field Days, a virtual education and networking event happening Aug. 25–27. He will share his advice around resiliency, a message we could all use right now.
Whether you join for one hour or 20, this event gives you the chance to learn at your own pace and network with others. Join your peers, industry leaders and favorite Top Producer experts. Learn more and register at FarmJournalFieldDays.com.