It was a brilliant, burning and sweating day at Burns Park in North Little Rock. There was an epic struggle ensuing between two rival soccer teams: the Lakeside rams and Little Rock Christian. Back and forth the ball travelled. Each team attacked the others defense trying so desperately to take the lead, only to their own goal when the ball was stolen. At last I heard the three shrill blasts of the referee’s whistle over the gasping, panting and communication of the Ram’s defense. My heart beat a thousand times a minute and my legs were on fire, but I forced myself to pick them up and trod over to the coaches. A couple words of encouragement, a little cursing (from the coaches), and a quick swig of water were all that I needed; I was pumped and ready to go. Just ten more minutes of overtime. Just ten minutes and it should be over, hopefully in a Ram victory. I heard the quick blast of a whistle, and then I felt the warm adrenaline coursing through my veins. OH NO! Little Rock Christian players had just blasted through our midfield and were approaching me and the Ram defense with overwhelming speed. I watched in horror as our sweeper stepped from the defensive line and missed the ball. Now the ball was at the feet of an opposing player with nobody between him and the Lakeside goal. I had kept him onside! The goalie stood no chance; it was a guaranteed score. And a goal it was, all because I had kept Little Rock Christian onside. A quick look at the referee confirmed it; the game was over. All of Lakeside’s dreams of playing in the state finals were crushed because of my mistake.
My heart must have skipped seven beats and then fallen down into my stomach. A wave of nausea swept over my entire body. I was so lightheaded that my legs were shaking and my vision was a little blurred. I had cost my team the game. As the realization dawned on me, emotions flooded into me. Tears welled up deep inside. Tears of anger, tears of frustration, and tears of disappointment. Why did it have to be me? I saw my older brother and a friend approaching. I must hide these tears; I must not let them see my tears. I quickly turned my head and wiped my eyes. Why did it have to be me? The one who lost the game for the whole team?
Well, after the terrible loss, and even after all the encouragement and pats on the back, I still couldn’t look my teammates in the face. Hours after the game, a few of us were eating at Burger King, trying to cheer each other up with silly jokes and farfetched stories. These jokes only started to cheer me up, but then I remembered something my father had told me not too long ago. He had said something along the lines of:
“No matter what happens, keep your trust in the Lord. Everything happens because He wants it to. So, whether good or bad, whatever happens is in His hands. The Bible says that anything He requires you to do, or anything He throws at you is possible to overcome. He won’t throw too much for you to handle.”
Remembering that statement brought back a sense of well-being and a warm hand to take away the fears and sorrow. I reflected upon the way I had felt after that game and threw away the negative feelings. After all, what had happened had happened because He had wanted it to. I decided then that I needed to trust in Him and to accept the fact that if it happened, it was because He intended it to. I can remember the ease that I felt the remainder of that night after I had remembered the quote from my father.
Since then, I have always remembered this quote and the meaning behind it. And I believe every word mentioned in the quote. Every time some event with negative consequences occurs in my life, I feel upset and maybe even scared. Then I remember the words from this quote (words from the Bible) and my upsets and fears subside. I may still be a little upset, or a little scared, but remembering and believing these truths will always comfort me.
Not too long ago, some difficulties had arisen that caused me to question my trust, but just for a short time. As I sat with a Bible on a Wednesday night at Lake Valley Community Church, I opened to a completely random chapter. I had been praying about this trust, and as soon as I opened the Bible, a couple of underlined verses caught my eye. As I read, I came upon a verse that represented one of my deepest beliefs” trusting Him. Proverbs 3: 4-6 reminded me that I needed to trust Him with everything:
“If you want favor with God and man, and a reputation for good judgment and common sense, then trust the Lord completely; don’t ever trust yourself. In everything you do, put God first, and he will direct you and crown your efforts with success.”