4 Things I Learned While Eating a Sandwich with Kathie Lee Gifford - Finds.Life.Church

It was a Friday morning, and our small team of three had just finished setting up to film an interview with Kathie Lee Gifford, singer, actress, author, former co-host of Live With Regis and Kathie Lee, and current co-host of the Today show with Hoda Kotb. In the background, I heard the TV that her assistant had turned on. I walked over, and sure enough—Kathie was live on the Today show. And I was watching her. In her house. It was surreal, to say the least.

In the next two hours, Kathie would leave the studio in Rockefeller Center, make the drive to her home in Connecticut, and we would have the afternoon to film a story with her about her love for the Bible. Needless to say, it was quite an honor.

When she arrived, she was quick to greet us with a hug and thanked us for making the effort to be there. I was prepared to get right to work in order to honor her time, but she and her team had other plans. They had prepared a lunch for the four of us to share and spend some time getting to talk before the shoot began. Okay!

The four of us sat down with our plates and spent about an hour sharing stories of our families, our hometowns, our careers (obviously, one person’s was more interesting than the others), and our faith. That time was likely the highlight of the whole day. Kathie’s personality was exactly what I saw from seeing her over the years on TV: warm, caring, honest, funny, blunt, and genuine. She’s as real as they come, with a very real relationship with Christ as well. I learned a lot about and from her.

Here are 4 things I learned from that lunch with Kathie Lee Gifford.

  1. Kathie is a student of the Bible.
    That phrase may actually be an understatement. Kathie has developed a heart for God’s Word built over decades of studying it intimately. She’s taken more trips to the Holy Land than I could count, and spent her time there learning the history and meaning of the Scriptures from rabbis. I mean, she knows her stuff! In the few hours I had with her over lunch and during the shoot, she brought up information and ideas about the Bible that enlightened me and caused me to want to find deeper understandings on my own! She wrote about her learnings in the Holy Land in her latest book, The Rock, The Road, and the Rabbi. I also highly recommend her YouVersion Bible Plan by the same title—it’s fantastic!
  2. Knowledge is nothing without a relationship.
    About 10 feet from the table where we shared lunch was her reading nook, complete with a fireplace and a view of the water from the cove just outside her window. She told me she wakes up at 4:00am to spend two hours in prayer and Bible study before she heads into the city to host her morning talk show. In her words, “It’s the best part of my day.” She knows that knowing about the life of Jesus is one thing, but a full relationship with Christ is built in time spent with Him.
  3. Find your own time with Jesus.
    I’ll admit, when I heard Kathie say that she spends two hours every morning in prayer and Bible study, I thought what you probably thought: how? My wife and I both work full time, and have two kids under the age of 6 (one a baby). How am I going to find that time? I actually asked her about this. While she encouraged me to make as much time as possible, she also recognized that the season of life we are each in may look different. She admitted it would have been very difficult to find that time when she was raising her own children. However, the principle was the same. Find the time, as best you can, to make your relationship with Jesus a priority.
  4. Scripture memorization is powerful.
    This idea stuck with me quite a bit. In my phone conversations with Kathie prior to this shoot, I quickly realized how much she loved the Scriptures. But it wasn’t until the extended time with her on set that I saw it in action. The amount of Scripture she recited over lunch, during her interview, and filming various scenes around her home was staggering. God’s Word flowed out from her just as naturally as any part of conversation. What made this even more impressive was the fact that each Scripture she mentioned had a story or a purpose to it—often a part of a prayer she would recite daily, or used as a pillar to guide her life. Kathie knows that in a constantly changing world, she wants her life grounded in the One who never changes.

Similar Topics: