Cav's Andrew DeClercq Is Maturing
by Jon Hanna
Cavalier Forward/Center, Andrew DeClercq finished his collegiate career
as the first Florida player in history to accumulate more than 1,300
points. He also ranked second in school history with 176 blocks.
In 1994 he was a member of the USA basketball team which competed in
the Goodwill Games in Russia. Today during his second season in Cleveland
he is defining his role with the Cav?s organization and discovering the
power of his faith.
On February 1st, he spent his 27th birthday by
attending team practice in preparation for the game against Washington
later that day. He also unselfishly found time to talk to Connection
Magazine about his faith.
"He does so much for me in everyday life. He gives me patience. He
gives me understanding," DeClercq says of Jesus Christ, unwittingly
revealing his spiritual maturity.
Born and raised in Detroit, until age 10, he proudly recalls the time
that his mother would take him and his two sisters to a local Southern
Baptist Church where he discovered the truth that would profoundly inspire
his life. Although at that time DeClercq?s father chose not to
participate in his families joining of faith, things are different now.
"Recently my dad started attending church," DeClercq?s
voice resonated with joy.
During the busy season of NBA basketball, DeClercq finds support for
his faith by attending chapel service before each game. He especially
enjoys meeting a lot of players, who are Christians, from other teams.
DeClercq added that he is also blessed to have Christian fellowship with
Cav?s Forward/Center, Mark Bryant. During the off-season he is active in
his hometown church in Clearwater, Florida.
DeClercq feels that Christians in professional sports should be allowed
to be vocal about their faith. "Why not talk about Jesus if that?s
a big part of your life," he asks.
"There is a truth out there that has always been. Keep searching.
When you look at Christ and read your Bible, it?s overwhelming that he
is the way," DeClercq declared confidently when asked if he had a
message for today?s youth.
DeClercq?s favorite Bible scripture is found in Matthew, chapter 7,
verses 13 and 14: "You can enter God?s Kingdom only through the
narrow gate. The highway to hell is broad and its gate is wide for the
many who choose the easy way. But the gateway to life is small and the
road is narrow and only a few ever find it."