Sunday, September 28, 2008

My son, the brave defender...

It is````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````issoccer season. For the past 7 years, I have dragged my chair, water bottle and camera to the soccer field to watch my kids play the sport they love. When I reach the sidelines I am transformed... no longer quiet and still, I become a loud, cheering momma!

It has been hard for me this year, because of Bible study at church and late work hours, I don't get to see all the games. This is difficult, for I never use to miss one game, unless my kids were playing at the same time on different teams! What is even rougher, is that my daughter refuses to go and watch a game. She is on strike from stepping foot on the soccer field, since she couldn't play this year, the first time since she was five, because it conflicts with her dance class!

However, last Saturday, I found myself once again at the soccer field. Although I had to wake up early on a Saturday morning, I found myself excited about watching Jordan play. The excitement was short lived. It was a makeup game, and we usually play our games on Monday and Tuesday nights. Trouble came when we only had 6 players show up. The team we were playing had a WHOLE team show up. To top it off, Jordan was the only older player on the team there and he and this pretty little blond girl were the only ones that even knew what they were doing. (Believe me, this is NOT a bias opinion!!!) The other two star players were gone! We pretty much knew we were dead before the game even started!!!

The coaches decided to play 5 players, which gave us one "resting." Big whoop! It is a big field and when the other team can switch out players every 5 minutes, well of course they had the advantage! Did that stop my son? No! In fact, even though they lost that day, by 6 goals, I walked away proud and a little amazed.

Picture this... A little blond girl, cute as a button, with a lot of talent, but pushed around by the big boys. A little black girl that falls down every five steps, don't know what her problem was! A "big" boy whose parents probably signed him up for soccer, because usually it is a very forgiving sport, for the nonathletic. A little black boy, who has potential and speed, but is scared of the ball and the other kids and a little girl that has enough energy and fearlessness for everyone, but no talent! And then you have my son... He is a strong kicker, has played since he was four, has lost a little of his speed as he has gotten older, but hangs in there with great determination and ... Trouble is, he is a defender and is good at it. If you know anything about soccer, you know the defender helps guard the goal and manages to kick the ball halfway down the field to his teammate. Problem was this particular morning, he was a defender, without a forward, Which meant he literally had to do it all! He only got one break the whole game! He would guard and defend, kick, run after his own ball, only for them to come back and score. He asked if the coach wanted him to be goalie for a while, to which he was told, "No, I need you on that field!"

My heart broke when he cried on the way home. He had accidentally did a goalie move, using his hands while guarding the goal, giving them a free kick and their 6Th goal. "Jordan, baby, why are you crying?" "Mom, I gave them that last point!"

Funny huh? He had already lost the game. They would have scored that point, whether he had touched the ball or not (nonathletic boy was in the goal! Why she didn't put Jordan in for the kick, I just don't know!). But here was my son, sad, because he felt he had let his team down. I asked him how he thought he had let them all down... His answer was simple: "I didn't do my job!"

Truth is he did do his job and so much more. He just couldn't accomplish by himself what a whole team is suppose to do. I have no doubt, if our regular goalie was there and our two speedy forwards were not missing, we would have had a whole different kind of game.

It really got me to thinking... God gave us all special gifts and talents. We were all put on this earth with a special "job" to do. Problem is so many of us don't show up for the game, the same "defenders" are playing more than their positions and wearing themselves out. And yes, at the end of the day, there is a little bit of guilt when the mission isn't accomplished. If we all worked with as much heart and determination as my brave little son did Saturday, there wouldn't be anything, that we as Christians couldn't accomplish for our Christ!

Did I also mention that my son suffers from allergies like his mom? I was scared he would have a big asthma attack right in the middle of the game, but he kept running and with a speed that was unusual for him... I asked him about it later: "I didn't think about it, Mom. I just knew it was up to me to keep running..."

Here are some verses that come to mind:

"He gives strength to the weary and increases the power of the weak. Even youths grow tired and weary and young men stumble and fall; but those who hope in the Lord will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint." Isaiah40:29-31

"Therefore since we are surrounded by such a cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles and let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us." Hebrews 12:1

I pray that you find a little encouragement from my young soccer player to persevere through your day, no matter if it seems the players are stacked against you.

1 comment:

Jim said...

Congrats on your "brave defender" and give him "big" sock on the arm and an "attaboy" from Poohpa. I'm proud of you "Jor-Jor"!!!!

And a big "#, number, one-two birthday for "Kay-Kay" today!!!!

Wish we could help eat your birthday cake.

We love you.
Poohpa and Grammy