Derek Carr, quarterback for the NFL’s Oakland Raiders, signed a five-year, $125 million contract last Thursday. Playing off of his jersey number, below are three life lessons we can all apply from Derek Carr and his massive payday:
1. Money Doesn’t Make a Person
At his contract announcement press conference, Carr talked about how much the money from his new contract wouldn’t change things for him that much. He was still going to be the same guy he was in college.
While the extra money will make life easier for Derek, the money won’t make him who he is. He grounded himself into his faith and core values years ago.
The money he received to him is only a tool for the glory of God. And Derek’s resources just got a lot bigger.
2. Hard Work Does Pay (In the Long Run)
I would like to think that I could go out tomorrow and have a few million in the bank. But any payday doesn’t happen overnight. Derek’s contract represents years of dedication towards his craft. Towards skills that he felt passionate about and towards a profession he felt led to do.
The contract really represents back pay from all the blood, sweat and tears he put in since he was a kid.
3. It’s Okay to Reward Yourself after a Success
The funniest moment from Carr’s press conference was when he was asked what would be his first big purchase after signing. “I’ve been eating clean. We got Ladd [Harris] here; he’s been having me eat clean. I’ll probably get Chick-fil-A,” Derek said.
He said this in a joking manner, but I think this deserves another look because Derek is absolutely right. We reward ourselves when we accomplish something towards our goals, passions and values. Otherwise, where’s the meaning in the pursuit?
If your trying to lose weight, why not give yourself a small reward (constructively) after losing your first 10 pounds? Rewarding yourself gives the brain a dopamine kick and helps you to continue to want to accomplish your goals.
4. Yes, You can Tithe Too
After making his Chick-fil-A joke, Derek talked about paying his tithe. “The first thing I’ll do is I’ll pay my tithe like I have since I was in college, getting $700 on scholarship check. That won’t change,” Carr said.
I’ve been tithing since college, too. It’s tough to do, I get it. But, as a Christian, its something we are called to to do from the goodness of our hearts. Out of the goodness of our hearts – not just to meet a requirement.
God doesn’t need our money. He uses this to help us learn to be givers. To help mold our hearts to be more Christ-like. It’s not an easy to start tithing, but you will feel better doing so in the long run.