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Stories of Celebrities and Famous People
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George Foreman
Stephen Baldwin
Mickey Mantle
Dave Dravecky
Darryl Strawberry
"Pistol" Pete Maravich
Franklin Graham
Tom Landry
Kirk Cameron
Brian 'Head' Welch




A CHANGED LIFE
George ForemanGeorge Foreman
Inside The Heavyweight
World Boxing Champion

Heavyweight World Boxing Champion, 76-5 record as a professional. 1968 Olympic Champion. As a boxer, he was as bad with his fists as anyone had seen in the very late 1960s.
In his youth, he was a miserable bully with a chip on his shoulder. But, then he got into boxing and became the World Heavyweight Champion. He had it all...but he still wasn't happy or at peace until he met the Lord.
His conversion happened on March 17, 1977. Just a few days previously, life had been looking good. He was on the comeback trail after having lost his title to Muhammad Ali a few years before. And now he was ready to fight a big fight against Jimmy Young, one that would be a set up for a rematch title fight. And yet, the bad man felt empty. For some strange reason, while standing on the balcony of his hotel room, he began a prayer to a God he says he wasn't sure existed: "God, maybe you can take my life and use it. Maybe you can use me as something more than a boxer."

On that same March 17,1977, he lost that all-important bout against Young. He hit bottom. Several years ago, he spoke with David Mainse on 100 Huntley Street about that day and his life-changing encounter with Jesus Christ:"I had just fought a fight with Jimmy Young...just a decision, it wasn't a tough fight or anything. After I found out I had lost, I went back to the dressing room...just a normal cooling off. And let me tell you business picked up for me there! I had always prayed to God. I believed there was probably a God somewhere; and I'd always said, 'No matter what, everybody got their own religion as long as they treat people right it's OK.' But when I left that dressing room, I was screaming the name of Jesus."

After the loss, he had entered the dressing room and began pacing up and down, obsessed with thoughts of his future and about his relationship with God. He was obsessed with the thought of death. This inner conflict and suddenly wrenching turmoil left him lying on the floor where God gave him a series of visions:

"I was snatched out of my body; and I don't know if you've been to the sea...as far off as you can see there's nothing but water. Well as far off as I could see there was nothing but people coming out, in something like a trap. And I know this place was hell; but I said 'I don't care, if this was death I still believe in God.' Then I was snatched right out of that place and taken to another place of life and back into my body. I started screaming 'That's all right I'm dying for God.' And so as I was sitting there I was snatched into all kinds of religions and brought back into the dressing room. I didn't know what was goin' on!"

Mainse asked, "So you actually thought you were dying?"
"I saw death...I saw it! I mean I had built my whole life on real estate...what I had in the bank; and I saw it all like a big joke. If you stick a match to a piece of paper, for a moment it stands up after it's burned; then you touch it, and it crumbles. I saw the whole world crumble behind me, and all I had was nothing. I had to leave all of it in the world. I couldn't even tell my mother 'bye,' I was dead! I was dead! And I started crying saying 'Lord I don't wanna die, I don't wanna die, I can still box,'...and I was talking to God...'I can still box!'

God said 'I don't want your money, I want you!' "
Foreman's friends and trainers got him up off of the floor and onto a training table where the sensations of meeting Jesus and feeling the pains of His death continued:
"So as I laid on the table, I'm coming back into my body; and I told one of my doctors to move his hand because the thorns are making me bleed on his hand. And blood started running down my face. And I told the other one to move his hand because on my hands and on my feet there was blood. All of the places where Jesus had blood when He died.
"I never had believed in Jesus; I wasn't going to go for it. I never would have, but let me tell you Jesus is alive. And I started screaming 'Jesus Christ come to life!' And I walked out of that room...jumped off of that table...and headed for a cold shower 'cause that's the last thing you would ask me to do after a fight.

"I started screaming words like 'hallelujah I've been born again.' They thought I was crazy and hurt, so they took me to the hospital. They thought I was losing my mind. And they ran all kinda tests on me for two or three days, and nothin' was wrong with me. But I saw the glory of God...I saw it! And let me tell you that Jesus is alive...there's a living God, and I didn't even know it. I was wondering about it before, but now I'm not wondering. I know! And I thank God because there's a lot of people who think for sure...and some think maybe, or maybe not. But I know. God...I don't know...for some reason touched me, an old sinner. There's a lot of clean men out in the world doing everything right, and He showed me that there's a living God.

"Since then I've been telling everybody! I don't care where you come from or what you're doing, stop it and learn about God and the Bible.

"And why God did this to me, I don't know; but I just praise Him every day. I dropped everything I was doing to tell the whole world that Jesus Christ is alive. God took me all over the country fighting, and I was just trying to exalt George Foreman. Now I'm going all over to try and tell them about Jesus"

George Foreman became on ordained minister and for ten years left boxing to preach the Gospel. He returned to the ring on March 9th, 1987 to raise money for the youth center he had started in Houston, Texas. Foreman won the WBC heavy weight championship in 1994 at the age of 45, becoming the oldest man in history to capture the title. He's still active in and around the ring today, most recently as a cable TV boxing color commentator.

From:  www.adherents.com/people/pf/George_Foreman.html

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A CHANGED LIFE
Stephen Baldwin
Stephen Baldwin Stephen Baldwin is a notable actor and the brother of notable actors, Alec, Daniel and William, sometimes collectively known as the "Baldwin brothers.
Click Below to See Him Tell About His Life Changing Story/Encounter With God On You Tube:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QGpFqmi_28U

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A CHANGED LIFE
http://www.wnd.com/images2/mmantle1.jpgMickey Mantle
During much of his Hall of Fame baseball career, Mickey Mantle was a fixture in the Fall Classic.  He was known as a great baseball slugger. He was known as the fastest man in the major leagues.  And he was known as a hell-raiser off the field.
Beginning in 1951, he played for New York Yankee teams that In the 1950s and 1960s, Mickey Mantle's name was synonymous with baseball.
From the mid-1950s until his death in 1995, Mantle developed a strong relationship with two professional athletes that would later have a profound effect on his life. One of those athletes was Bobby Richardson, the Yankee second baseman and Mantle’s teammate from 1955 to 1966. Richardson had strong Christian convictions. He also had some outstanding years with the New York team, including winning the World Series MVP in 1960. Richardson described his friendship with Mantle as ''one that lasted a lifetime.''

Richardson always had the ear of his good friend Mantle. During their years with the Yankees, Richardson had many opportunities to share his faith with Mantle. It appeared at the time, though, that Mantle never really took Richardson's words of spiritual advice seriously. Most everyone closely associated with Mantle knew he had a reputation for playing hard and partying even harder. He also struggled with alcohol.

While Richardson never got discouraged in sharing his faith with his friend, he noticed that Mantle, with the realization of his own mortality, finally asked the questions that revealed he was open to spiritual things. In a television interview with Bob Costas long after he retired from the game, Mantle said he had ''a void in his heart and an emptiness inside'' after the 1985 death of his friend and former Yankee great Roger Maris.
In the 1950s, Mantle used the same locker stall as another New York professional athlete, Pat Summerall, but during different seasons. Summerall was the place kicker and tight end of the NFL's New York Giants. Summerall recalled that he first met Mantle when they played minor league baseball together. Over the years, Summerall and Mantle ''played a lot of golf and interacted socially.''

When Summerall entered the Betty Ford Center for Alcohol in the early 1990s, Mantle showed interest in the center. Summerall told WND, ''Mickey was concerned about his own alcohol consumption.''

After many long question-and-answer sessions with the Hall of Fame baseball player, Summerall challenged Mantle to enter the clinic. Summerall was thrilled when his friend agreed to enter the facility, and did so on a day not normally reserved for new patients.
It was the policy of the Betty Ford Center to disallow outgoing telephone calls during a patient's one-month stay. Summerall remembers fondly how Mantle somehow got on the phone and called him a number of times, sometimes late at night. While this was a difficult period in Mantle's life, both Richardson and Summerall agree their friend was later to become an outstanding spokesman for people everywhere who were suffering from alcoholism.

By 1995, Mantle's health took a turn for the worse when it was discovered he had cancer – that on top of liver problems associated with alcoholism. While hospitalized, it didn't take long for Mantle to call Richardson and ask him to pray for him.
Richardson vividly remembers visiting Mantle a few weeks before his death Aug. 13, 1995. One of the first things Mantle wanted to tell his former teammate was that he ''now trusted in Christ as his Lord and Savior.'' Mantle assured him by quoting to Richardson and his wife one of the more famous verses from the Bible, John 3:16: ''For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believes in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.''

Years later, Richardson found out that Mantle, while in the hospital, somehow listened to a Focus on the Family testimonial tape of NBA Hall of Famer Pete Maravich. Commenting on how this tape was instrumental in leading Mantle to Christ, Focus Vice President Kurt Bruner told WND that ''after achieving nearly everything that the world has to offer and finding that something was still lacking, Pete discovered Jesus Christ and never looked back.'' Richardson felt that his former teammate identified with similar aspects of the basketball player's life.

From: www.wnd.com/news/article.asp?ARTICLE_ID=52498

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A CHANGED LIFE
The Dave Dravecky Story
Dave DraveckyDave was born February 14, 1956 in Youngstow, Ohio, United States) is a former Major League Baseball player for the San Diego Padres (1982-87) and San Francisco Giants (1987-89). As a pitcher he threw 558 strikeouts. He was an All-Star player for the National League in 1983. He is currently a motivational speaker, and author.  He is well remembered for his battle against cancer, which ended his career as his team was reaching the World Series He won the Hutch Award in 1989.

Click Below to See Him Tell About His Life Changing Story On You Tube:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5-CHd7J2rfA

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A CHANGED LIFE
Darryl Strawberry
Darryl Strawberry Darryl was born March 12, 1962 and is a former professional baseball player who is well-known both for his play on the field and for his controversial behavior off of it. Throughout the 1980s and early 1990s, Strawberry was one of the most feared sluggers in the game, known for his prodigious home runs and his intimidating presence in the batter's box with his 6-foot-6 frame and his long, looping swing that elicited comparisons to Ted Williams. During his 17-year career, he helped lead the New York Mets to a World Series championship in 1986 and the New York Yankees to three World Series championships in 1996, 1998, and 1999.

A popular player during his career, Strawberry was voted to the All-Star Game eight straight times from 1984–1991.

Click Below to See Him Tell About His Life Changing Story On You Tube:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=H7kMvsMdATI

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A CHANGED LIFE
“Pistol” Pete Maravich
http://voreblog.files.wordpress.com/2009/03/ppete.jpgAfter graduating from LSU in 1970, Maravich was the third selection in the first round of that year's NBA player draft  and made league history when he signed a $1.9 million contract — one of the highest salaries at the time — with the Atlanta Hawks. He wasted little time becoming a prime time player by averaging 23.2 points per game his rookie season and being named to the NBA All-Rookie Team. After spending four seasons in Atlanta, Maravich was traded to the New Orleans Jazz for 8 players, where he peaked as an NBA showman and superstar. He made the All-NBA First Team in 1976 and 1977 and the All-NBA Second Team in 1973 and 1978. He led the NBA in scoring in the 1976-77 season with 31.1 points per game. Prior to the 1979-80 season, Maravich moved with the team to Utah. He was waived by the Jazz on January 18, 1980 and was quickly picked up by the Boston Celtics where he played the rest of the season alongside Larry Bird Maravich retired in the fall of 1980. He was known for the fake wrist pass "the pistol".

For all his on-court triumphs, Maravich was never satisfied with his playing and never won a championship. He battled depression and alcoholism until a dramatic change came about in his life.

You can view and listen to “Pistol” Pete tell his story on You Tube by clicking the following link :http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Z31E7rBNx-M

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A CHANGED LIFE
Franklin Graham
http://www.google.com/images?q=tbn:2zYcrmc-XJr9PM::www.mtscentre.ca/events/2006/061020/image2.jpg&h=78&w=52&usg=__cmvg5RHN9a5PGTInHUCGOs_Lylg=The son of the famous preacher, Billy Graham, Franklin did not adhere to the spiritual convictions of his parents until the age of 22 when he was confronted with a decision that changed his life forever.

Watch Franklin tell his story on you Tube, just click on the link below:
http://www.tangle.com/view_video?viewkey=d51e79ff4943455cd6a7

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A CHANGED LIFE
Tom Landry
Tom LandryNFL Hall of Fame, 20 consecutive winning seasons, 13 division championships, five trips to the Super Bowl, two world championship titles: he went to the top and always wore his trademark hat.
Tom Landry was one of the most easily recognized men in the USA: a man so identified with his job that he was usually called "Coach Tom Landry". As head coach of the Dallas Cowboys football team for nearly thirty years, Coach Landry compiled a winning record that few professional coaches have since matched. But that success did not come easily. Beginning with the expansion team in 1960, Landry and the Cowboys suffered through five straight losing seasons. Their ledger during those first five years reads only 18 wins, 46 losses and 4 ties. Not exactly the kind of record a dynasty is built on!
"People were wondering whether or not we were going to make it," Landry once remarked. Of course, the Cowboys did make it! In 1965 they broke even, and in the years that followed they compiled one of the best records in NFL history.
Running a professional football team can be a hectic job, but Coach Landry completed the task successfully because his priorities were in order. "Winning a football game isn't the end of all things," he once said. "It's got a priority, but it's not number one in my life. This creates for me a certain amount of calmness, even though I'm human enough to suffer when we lose."

Landry's greatest legacy - and his highest priority in life - was his Christian faith. "This is really the most important factor in my life, my faith in Jesus Christ." Landry continued, "When you accept Christ, He becomes first in your life. It's this priority that gives me peace."

Peace was something Coach Landry did not always enjoy, however. For a long time he sought fulfillment in his own achievements: "I had a very restless feeling inside me that I wanted to accomplish something, but I really didn't know what it was." As a boy in the small town of Mission, Texas, Tom Landry was a regular attendee of Sunday school and church, but thought that football seemed more important. So young Tom began to set goals - specific goals for his budding football career. In high school he told himself, "If I could just be part of a championship team, be an all-district halfback, then I would have everything I wanted." In his senior year Landry saw that dream fulfilled, but, in his own words, the thrill "wore off quickly."

Next it was college, but even his success at the prestigious University of Texas and trips to the Sugar Bowl and Orange Bowl were not enough to satisfy him. Even professional football didn't do it. Landry discovered that his restlessness had followed him even to the NFL. Although Landry didn't know it, he was experiencing the reality of Luke 12:15. "A man's life does not consist in the abundance of his possessions" (or achievements!). Landry never imagined that his problem was basically a spiritual one. After all, he had been going to church all his life. He already WAS a Christian, wasn't he?

An invitation to a Bible discussion group in 1958 changed his thinking and gave him an answer to his quest for peace. God began to open Coach Landry's eyes to the difference between a mere churchgoer - a "good" person - and a true Christian. As he related, "I committed my life to Christ and discovered what Jesus meant when He said, 'I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full'" (John 10:10). What was it that Coach Landry discovered? He found the source of his restlessness: separation from God. "For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God" (Romans 3:23). Then he realized the discomforting truth that he was a sinner, and sin was causing his alienation from God. In fact, because we all have sinned, each one of us has experienced this same separation from God.

But Landry also discovered some good news! Romans 6:23 says it best: "For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord." As the coach said, "All we have to do is recognize that Jesus did die on the cross for our sins, that we are sinners, and that it's only through Jesus Christ that we can have our sins forgiven." For Coach Tom Landry, placing his faith in Christ brought an end to his restless search for life's meaning. From: http://poptop.hypermart.net/landry.html

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A CHANGED LIFE
Kirk Cameron Won't Be Left Behind
Kirk Cameron Won't Be Left BehindDuring the Left Behind concert tour in January of this year, Kirk Cameron shared his testimony with the capacity crowd at the People's Church in Franklin, Tennessee. He began by revealing his feelings of deep loneliness, even during his successful stint on "Growing Pains." Kirk said that much like the character Buck Williams whom he plays in the movie, he discovered how much he needs Christ in his life. Through a friend Kirk came to know God. "He said, 'Kirk, what you're feeling and the things you are talking to me about are the result of the fact that you don't know God. You don't know that you were made by God to know Him and have a personal relationship with Him.' He explained to me about how sin separates you from God and how there is this stubborn, selfish streak that ran deep in the heart of every person, that we're all the same and that we need to turn our hearts to God and ask Him to forgive us, that God, more than anything, wants us to do that and He has provided a way for that to happen through His Son Jesus Christ, who died on the cross to pay the price of my sin. So we can just come to Him and say 'God, please forgive me. I'll live my life for You.'

Kirk CameronAnd I thought that, although I wanted it to be true, and I wrestled with so many thoughts in my mind and I had so many questions and doubts. And finally there was a day where I remember very vividly saying to myself, 'You know, Kirk, you can play around with the ideas of God and being a good person and all this stuff, but you know what? If you died tonight, you wouldn't be going to heaven, because if the Bible's true then being a good person is not what it's all about. The only way to heaven is by turning away from your sin and turning to God through faith in Jesus Christ.'
I didn't know any kind of theology or any kind of ways to pray. I just closed my eyes one day and said, 'God, if you're real, I really need to know. If You're there and You love me, You would show me in a way that I can really understand.'
It wasn't like a lightening bolt came through the door or anything, but it was like this little flame in my heart just sparked and it's stayed lit ever since then; my growing relationship with the best friend I've ever had. And He began to change who I am and what I live for. So I can tell you today, of all the things that I had the opportunity to experience and all the privileges I have had in my career, absolutely nothing compares to knowing Jesus Christ. He just came crashing through the walls of my life and said, 'I'm who you're looking for. I'm your hero. I'm the one that you need.'

From: http://www.christianactivities.com/testimonies/story.asp?ID=1013
by Kathryn E. Darden for Christian Activities

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A CHANGED LIFE
Brian ‘Head’ Welch
A founder and long-time member of the famed heavy metal band, Korn, Brian "Head" Welch had a life transforming experience that changed his life forever. "I had it all with Korn, but gave it up for a better life", said Brian "Head" Welch. "I made more money, I played bigger shows, had houses, cars, I tried drugs, I tried sex, I tried everything to try to get this pleasure out of this life. And I thought that I could fulfill my life with all this stuff. By having my dream come true, and it came true, but it didn’t fulfill it, that’s why I wanted to die so much."

Click below to watch “Head” tell his story of how he got freedom from drug addiction:

You Tube:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LEc5wodqu4g

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