That’s how my son described a boy at a basketball game to my husband over the phone. We had gone to regionals and one very spirited group of boys had decided not to wear shirts but instead to paint huge letters on their stomachs and stand in a row spelling the name of their school. A-S-H-L-A-N-D. They waved pom poms, swayed back and forth to the pep band music, and screamed at the refs……their energy inspired the crowd all around them.
But when my son reflected on the night, he remembered one boy in particular that looked familiar from a concert the night before. And in order to give my husband some type of image of this boy at the game, he simply said it like it was….”He was the “s” in “Ashland.” I thought it was so cute when I heard it! I probably would have tried to describe him….blonde hair, medium heighth, nice smile….something personal. But Nick saw him as part of something bigger. Something outside of his own personal space. He saw him as a very important letter in a very important word. Without him, Ashland would have simply been “Ahland,” which makes no sense. Alone at the concession stand, this same boy would have simply been “S” which makes no sense by itself. But in his right place in the word, he made everything make sense. Just like every other boy who stood in the line. Not only that, but each boy knew where to stand. The letter “d” didn’t try to come first, and the letter “l” was fine following the letter “h.” The word was “Ashland,” the school was Ashland, and the boys all knew how to communicate this message to the crowd!
Isn’t our life just like this in many ways? We all have something to offer. Something very special and very unique. Often, our contribution to church or to life in general doesn’t seem very powerful all alone, but when we learn to fall in line, take our place, and join the team, we DO make a difference-a difference that people notice and a difference that sends a message-not about us but about our team or our family or our church.
Who are you lining up with? Does it make sense? What message are you sending to those who are reading your life story as it fits into a bigger message?
Remember what Paul says in I Corinthians 3, “2You yourselves are our letter, written on our hearts, known and read by everybody. 3You show that you are a letter from Christ, the result of our ministry, written not with ink but with the Spirit of the living God, not on tablets of stone but on tablets of human hearts.”
Have a “s”pecial day! I love you all!
HI Tammy, very powerful insight, sometimes it is so easy to take on things as a loner and forget that we are a part of a higher calling.
“in his right place in the word, he made everything make sense”…this quote from your article has great significance. If we are in the word, are we ankle deep, perhaps waist deep, or even up to our necks? The only way for life’s twists and turns to “make sense” is to look at it from God’s eternal point of view, and the only way to see God’s point of view is to immerse ourselves in His Word, be in the “right place in the Word”. We can only be in that “right” place if we know His Word…read it, study it, memorize it, pray over it, discuss it with friends, meditate on it, and just soak it in in any way we can. I know your heart so I know that you long to be forever and always in the “right place”. So do I and all the others who love you and your family. Thank you for reminding us all of the vital importance of being in the “right place in the Word”. Even if one is just beginning to dip his toes, know that each word brings you closer to knowing God’s heart. Oh how I long to be over my head “in the Word” and trusting God to make sense of it all. I am inspired to devote more time to putting myself in the “right place”. I know you are inspiring others to do the same. Thank you. I am praying for Nick and you and the family. I love you all.