Jeff Olson —  January 22, 2010 — 3 Comments

I recently read the book Open. It’s a fascinating and refreshingly candid autobiography of Andre Agassi, one of the best players to ever step foot on a tennis court.

After winning eight Grand Slam titles and earning millions of dollars, Agassi, (who was forced into playing tennis at a young age by a tyrant father who was driven to make his son a winner), tells of his tragic slide into drug abuse. Despite his enormous success, for most of his life he had followed the script that others wrote for him, and it left it completely empty. To him it felt like it was all a charade.

With no idea of who he really was, the man who once sported the advertisement slogan “image is everything” turned to heavy drinking and snorting crystal meth.

When asked on a sports radio talk show about how he quit using meth and eventually resurrected his life and his career, Agassi said it wasn’t like he said no to crystal meth as much as it was he began saying yes to something better.

Embracing something better it is central to how any of us break free from addictions that are destroying our lives. At times it can be hard to believe there is more to life than what we’ve been settling for in our addictions. But that is why faith often comes into play. Sometimes faith in the promise of something better is all we have to get us through (2 Corinthians 5:7).

Jeff Olson

Posts Google+

eff is a licensed professional counselor in the State of Michigan and has worked for Our Daily Bread Ministries as a counselor and a writer since 1992. He has authored a number of Discovery Series booklets ( on such topics as addictions, grief, depression and marital abuse. He also maintains a part-time private counseling practice in the West Michigan area. Jeff and his wife, Diane, have been married since 1986 and have raised two lovely daughters. He is an avid outdoors man who also enjoys sports, music, boardgames, books, and movies.

3 responses to Open

  1. Faith in the promise of something better is good, yet faith in God is the best.
    Sadly, to live it daily is undeniably very hard, we are more relying on our futile strength and wisdom than trusting His taking care of us.

  2. I think the key element in this story is not just finding faith but ones identity through God. Trying to live a life where your identity is defined by the desires of others and not defined by your walk with Christ will lead to disappointment and despair. However, living your life for God can be very difficult when you live a life filed with secular influences. It’s is very easy to fall into the trap of complacency, self doubt, and dependence on social acceptance. Especially acceptance and approval from your family.

  3. Take up your Cross Daily and Follow Me said Our Lord Jesus Christ. Christ walked the road of life and knows the difficulty the human race faces. The path of destruction is wide and easy to take put the reward is eternal to take the narrow path with unknown bends and dark valleys; eternity with Our Wonderful Saviour Jesus Christ. Personally I believe that today as A Believer those difficult paths give us the knowledge and compassion to help others.
    Remember to have compassion as the Lord did and do not seek the approval of others.


Leave a Reply