No. 1059



When it comes to achieving outstanding success, there are few enablers more powerful than a made-up mind. If you have never personally experienced this phenomenon, what I want to share with you today could be life-changing.
In reality, most of us could achieve much more than we have, if we would simply make up our mind, make a personal commitment, and then begin to plan our days to achieve whatever it is that we have a burning desire to achieve. I have experienced this to some degree in my own life, but I recently met a man who has beaten all the odds to achieve the goals and the success he desired.
This man’s name is David Vince, and I met him a while back when he spoke to the Rotary Club in the nearby community of Morrilton, Arkansas. I was in town that day to visit with the mayor about helping to start a “Bookcase for Every Child” project, and he took me as his guest to the Rotary Club meeting. I had heard about David from Coach Dale Brown, former head men’s basketball coach at Louisiana State University, a few months earlier and had even sent him one of my books. I was so inspired by his talk that, at the close of the meeting, I told him that I was a nationally syndicated columnist and would like to share his story with my readers. He said, “Are you Jim Davidson?” Of course I said yes. That day I bought his book and have read it. It will make you think about your own life, and your success. It had that kind of effect on me.
The book is his life story. It includes his marriage to a remarkable lady named Susan, their three children, the various schools and colleges for which he coached, and some of the unique challenges he faced because of his handicap. That never kept him from pressing on, and the book also contains many photos of David and famous baseball people he got to know, such as Wade Boggs and Tony Larussa, manager of the St. Louis Cardinals.
You see, David Vince is a double above-knee amputee since birth, one who never played the game of baseball but who pursued a career in athletic coaching. I hope you understand that this is not just a man with a physical handicap, but a man who excelled, inspired others and is a real winner. He was named Coach of the Year 10 times, had more than 30 players earn baseball scholarships and five players selected in the Major League Baseball Draft, and he coached baseball and other sports in several states and internationally.
There is a quote at the beginning of the book by an unknown author that pretty well sums up his life and career to this point. “The road to success is not straight. There is a curb called Failure, a loop called Confusion, speed bumps called Friends, red lights called Enemies, caution lights called Family. You will have flats called Jobs, but if you have a spare called Determination, and engine called Perseverance, insurance called Faith, and a driver called Jesus, you will make it to a place called Success.”
Here is a final question that I hope you will ponder long and hard -- What do you need to make up your mind to do while you still have the time and the energy to do it? If David Vince can coach his high school and college baseball teams to victory 470 times as a double above-knee amputee who never played a game, you can also achieve even greater things in your life. I know he has definitely inspired me to achieve more, for the Glory of God. You can order his book “When Life Throws You Curves, Keep Swinging” from or e-mail to invite him as a speaker for talks and workshops to the athletic community, religious organizations, school veterans and civic clubs.
(Editor’s Note: Bookcase for Every Child – Changing Lives & Futures – ONE AT A TIME. Please visit our website: