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Olympian with wife and child has an 'alternative lifestyle'

David Wise, US freestyle skier, holds up the American flag after his gold medal run in the freestyle skiing halfpipe event at the 2014 Sochi Winter Olympic Games in Rosa Khutor, February 18, 2014 (Credit: NBCOlympics.com) Yesterday I wrote on David Wise, the husband and father who won a skiing gold medal at the Winter Olympics.  NBC reported the story this way: "David Wise's alternative lifestyle leads to Olympic gold."  What makes a lifestyle "alternative"?  According to Wikipedia, it is "a lifestyle diverse in respect to mainstream ones, or generally perceived to be outside the cultural norm. . . . Usually, but not always, it implies an affinity or identification with some matching subculture (examples include hippies, Gypsies, goths and punks)."

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Youth pastor wins Olympic gold

First placed David Wise of the U.S. reacts during the men's freestyle skiing halfpipe finals at the 2014 Sochi Winter Olympic Games in Rosa Khutor, February 18, 2014. (Credit: Reuters/Lucas Jackson) David Wise is the most unusual "black sheep" in the Olympic Games.  The New York Times calls skiers "models of branded dishevelment marketed as easygoing and athletic slackers, usually longhaired and clothed in flannel, like guitarists from a jam band enjoying a day in the snow."  By contrast, Wise is a 23-year-old husband and father whom his competitors call "vanilla."  The Times describes him as "counterculture to the counterculture.  He is the undude."  He agrees: "People kind of look at me as the black sheep.  I don't necessarily live the lifestyle that goes along with skiing."

He also happens to be the best in the world at what he does.  In the freeski pipe, where athletes perform incredible aerial acrobatics while skiing up and down a snow-covered U-shaped arena, Wise has won back-to-back X Games titles and a world championship.  One of his "tricks" involves spinning 3½ times in the air before landing on his skis and continuing his run.  This week, his signature trick helped him win gold at the Sochi Olympics.

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An Olympic champion's amazing conversion

Kelly Clark, the 30 year old American snowboarder and 2014 Olympic bronze medalist, poses for a photo with the Team USA puppy, days before her event in the Olympic village (Credit: Kelly Clark via Instagram) Kelly Clark won bronze at this year's Winter Olympics, the only snowboarder ever to win three medals.  (She won gold in 2002 and bronze in 2010).  When she won her gold medal, she was the youngest member of the U.S. Olympic team.  Three years later, she won first place at the World Cup.  But her life was as dark as her athletic prospects were bright.

"I achieved the highest in my sport.  I was famous," she says.  "I had money.  I had an Olympic gold medal.  Everything that anyone could have wanted, and I found out that wasn't what I was looking for."  She turned to drinking and partying, but nothing filled the void in her soul.

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What Sports Illustrated swimsuit edition says about us

Sports Illustrated is airing a two-hour special on NBC on Monday night honoring the 50th anniversary of the Swimsuit issue (Credit: NBC)The 50th annual Sports Illustrated swimsuit issue is being released today.  The idea of editor Andre Laguerre, it was created in 1964 to fill the winter months, typically a slower time in the sports calendar.  Laguerre summoned a young fashion reporter named Jule Campbell to his office and asked her, "How would you like to go to some beautiful place and put a pretty girl on the cover?"  Campbell made the swimsuit issue into a juggernaut.

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'How to persuade a Christian to become an atheist'

How to Persuade a Christian to Become Atheist (Credit: Wikihow) I recently found a fascinating, 15-step strategy for converting Christians to atheism.  The plan is an excellent way to do just the opposite, helping atheists find eternal life in Christ.

One: think about your friendship.  The article asks atheists to build relationships with Christians before trying to convert them.  Of course, the opposite is just as true.  Jesus healed bodies in order to heal souls.  We must earn the right to share his love.

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