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Kings of the Kingdom

A rare sighting on the 50-yard line inspired me.

 

There are subjects in this world that are quite controversial.

We stray away from bringing them up at family gatherings, when introducing your significant other to your parents that first time, and when interviewing for that new job.

We aim not to offend in our opening moments. We aim to appeal to all.

In writing, it’s quite similar. There are risks that you can or cannot take. You might get shot down, or you might get praised. That’s just a decision that must be made.

This week, one of many controversial topics has been brought into play. America’s fate for the next four years is being decided. I can’t vote yet, but everyone at school will still be talking about it. Some will win. Some will lose. Not all of America will be happy.

It’s kind of like my past Friday night. I had my usual duties covering the Sequoia football game. We were expected to win. For Homecoming, it’s traditional that you pick such a game, so that all of the alumni can leave the stands afterwards with smiles on their faces.

We won the game by more than a touchdown or two. I can’t help but be somewhat sad when this happens. Of course I want Sequoia to win, but I can’t help but feel sorry for the opposing team. I know what it’s like to lose. Whenever the other team scores an additional touchdown, it’s like a stab in the heart. It’s no fun to be there. That’s why I can’t help but feel bad when we’re way ahead.

When the fourth quarter ended, all of the players from both teams went out on the field and shook hands, a usual proceeding. They all kneeled down in the center, took their helmets off, and looked to The King’s Academy head coach. 

King’s is a private Christian high school in Sunnyvale. They invite each team to come and pray with them after every football game, win or lose.

Not knowing this was going on, I proceeded to walk up, figuring they were just going to be talking. With recorder in hand I heard the coach mentoring these young men.

He told them not to take for granted these gifts that they have been given. They are gifts from God. He told the players and coaches from Sequoia that it was a privilege to play them. 

Number 72 led a prayer. I bent my head and prayed with them.

I don’t normally write about religion because I aim to not offend. But this is important to me. God is important to me.

Jesus saved my soul. I try to live each and every day with God at the center of my life. He gave me the gift of writing, so I try to use it as he would want me to.

When the King’s Academy head coach talked to the players I couldn’t help but get overwhelmed. This team was on the receiving end of a blowout, had only won one game this season, and has a student body half the size of ours, yet they were here talking and going out of their way to spend time with us.

See, together we are part of a much bigger team - God’s team. I know that not everyone may believe this, but this is my life and this is what I know to be true. "Living As Laurel" includes God. Jesus powers it.

This week, not everyone will win. Some will lose, whether it’s the election, football, or something else entirely. This week will be big, but let’s not forget ourselves in the aftermath. Let’s remember what really matters in the grand scheme of things.

King’s Academy could have walked away. They could have given their high-fives and gotten on the bus to head back home. But they didn’t. And that’s what makes them different. That’s what makes them unique.

That’s what makes them heroes.

 

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Lisa Maxe November 09, 2012 at 05:58 AM
Dear Laurel, I am a TKA football mom that has been heartsick over the losing football season, in spite of how hard the guys have worked. Your article was so touching, and inspiring. It is comforting to know the team is full of winners, glorifying God. Thank you for lifting my heart. Lisa Maxe
Kelly November 09, 2012 at 07:22 PM
You are a brave woman, Laurel. Thank you for writing this. Keep writing from your heart and with conviction and you will go far.
Jamie White November 09, 2012 at 08:00 PM
Wow, Laurel! You have truly been given a gift.... a very powerful story and you framed it beautifully, it brought tears to my eyes. It is time to focus on the things that matter, which nine times out of 10 are the little things, that really add up to making a difference in this life. Thank you for sharing this story : )
Alissa Picker November 10, 2012 at 10:01 PM
Laurel: I always enjoy reading your articles, but didn't realize that this one (which my husband had forwarded to me) was yours until near the end. I thought it was written by a much older writer. Not only has your faith grown, but your eloquence, too! You stopped many of us in our tracks with your keen observations and humble words. This season is fraught with frenetic and often competitive activity (sports, elections, and even college admissions). Thank you for returning our collective attention to subjects that matter: character, unity, faith. Yours was a refreshing read, and a telling revelation of the valuable education offered to students at The King's Academy.
Ted Boulet November 11, 2012 at 02:25 AM
Ted Boulet What a great message from a wonderful young writer. This grand parent of a TKA player thanks you.

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