On May 2, 2017, Mid-America Christian University held its second annual athletic awards ceremony — known fondly as the MAACs — at the Oklahoma Sports Hall of Fame in Oklahoma City. On that evening, many of our student-athletes were honored with awards and recognitions, ranging from academic distinctions to lighthearted nods to fashion and hairstyles.
Of these awards, the Heart of the Evangel is the most prestigious. Given to one student-athlete every year, the award epitomizes the bold, humble messengers for Christ MACU has chosen as its mascot. This year, the Heart of the Evangel was awarded to senior softball pitcher Morgan Wardlow. After receiving the award, Morgan penned the folllowing:
In the next couple of weeks, many lasts are approaching for me as I graduate next weekend. My last college softball practice, my last college softball game, my last college final and numerous others. One of which was my very last sports banquet this evening. Tonight I was privileged enough to receive the Heart of an Evangel Award at our MACU sports banquet. To receive such an award after being on the ballot with numerous other students that embodied what it means to have the heart of an evangel, was such an honor.
I share all this not to brag about my own accomplishments, but rather to brag about what Mid-America Christian University has given me in the past two years. I can say with complete confidence that this university has bettered me as a teammate, a student, a friend, and most importantly, as a follower of Christ.
For such an incredible Christ-based institution to allow me to represent them on the softball field with MACU across my chest and in numerous other facets of life, let alone present to me such a prestigious award, has been one of the most life changing opportunities.
To attend a university that declares Christ as the center of all we are, has been more impactful than I ever anticipated. Recently, one of my professors approached me after class and handed to me a copy of the devotional she had most recently been reading. She then said "Morgan, I copied this and brought it to you because God laid it on my heart to share this with you." It's also a common occurrence to have my professors pray for us prior to every class. These prayers aren't done out of monotony and routine. The prayers lifted up are ones that have more heart and genuineness than I've ever heard prayed before.
These few examples are just a very slim portion of the love and unending encouragement we as students experience on a daily basis from this incredible university.
If for some reason I was lended the opportunity to go back and choose where my last two years of college would be spent, I would choose MACU 1,000 times over.
Somebody at FCA recently said "it would be a shame not to take advantage of the group of believers around you in this moment that have your best interest at heart and want to see you succeed under the guidance of God to glorify him as much as possible."
This entire school from faculty, to professors, to students, to teammates have become a family to me. They'll forever be a part of me.
I will forever be in debt to MACU for providing me with a firm foundation to step out in society with, meeting an incredible group of lifelong friends, and for having met the love of my life.
For all that, I thank you MACU and I'll always be proud to call myself an Evangel.