Lucille O'Neal
Shaquille O'Neal's mom, Lucille O'Neal

Join us on our new podcast each weekday for an interesting story, well told, from Charisma News. Listen at

Led by the mother of Shaquille O’Neal, a group of NBA moms are proving some of the best action takes place off-court 

They are NBA moms today, but before their sons entered the spotlight they were just “Mom.” The mothers of Dwyane Wade, Shaquille O’Neal, Magic Johnson and Josh Smith come from different cities and different walks of life, but they have one thing in common: They diligently pray for their superstar sons.

Jolinda Wade, mother of Dwyane Wade, sends her son text messages with inspiring Scriptures to feed his spirit every day. “I encourage Dwyane in the Lord when he goes through trials. He comes to my church when he’s in Chicago, and he claps and jumps and praises God. Dwyane prayed me through a lot of stuff. Now, I pray for him every day.”

Lucille O’Neal co-founded the Mothers of Professional Basketball Players (MPBP) to provide support to moms whose sons and daughters play in the NBA or WNBA. She’s the current president—and a praying mom. “I always pray for my son. I encourage Shaquille to be true to his heart, to set goals and to work hard. And I pray.”

Paulette Smith, mother of Atlanta Hawks forward Josh Smith, says: “You never stop being a mom. If God directs me in a way to minister to my son, that’s the way I will go. More often, I just pray. Prayer is a powerful weapon.”

Christine Johnson, Magic Johnson’s mother, encouraged her son along the way to his NBA career—and did plenty of praying for him. Her advice to mothers everywhere: “Just pray for them and with them. When your children grow up and leave your house, there’s not much you can do but pray.”

For a limited time, we are extending our celebration of the 40th anniversary of Charisma. As a special offer, you can get 40 issues of Charisma magazine for only $40!

NEW - Life in the Spirit is your Spirit-filled teaching guide. Encounter the Holy Spirit, hear God speak to you, and enjoy timeless teachings on love, mercy and forgiveness. LEARN MORE!

Your Turn

Comment Guidelines
View/Add Comments
Use Desktop Layout
Charisma Magazine — Empowering believers for life in the Spirit