How Inspiring!

We had an exciting weekend of soccer. My daughter’s team ended their season with a tournament. It was a sight to behold with a sea of soccer games going on in every direction. There were victories and losses going on. There were great plays and flops. There were children and their families spending the weekend engulfed in soccer. It was exhilarating, I must admit. My daughter was scheduled for three games. They were down a couple of players but you wouldn’t know it by the way they played. They were fierce. They were united. They were out there giving it every effort. It was intense and so much fun. And my daughter who has struggled all year brought her best.

I have written about soccer and my daughter throughout the year. I have shared my struggle as her Mom not knowing how to encourage her. I have not known how to inspire her. I have tried to cheer her on telling her I know she could do it. She played adequately all year, but not her best. She seemed to leave her best on the practice field, until this weekend. I watched her work as she never has before. She played her best soccer this weekend. I was proud of her but mostly I was happy for her. Somehow she had found her inspiration and moved forward fearlessly. As a result, she played her best.

After her third game this weekend Karoline revealed her motivation. We were driving along and she said “Getting that goal was kind of like Bethany Hamilton going after that wave.” She had found her inspiration from the movie Soul Surfer. She has watched it at least a dozen times lately. We even watched a Youtube video of Bethany and Nick Vujicic surfing in Hawaii. She wants to learn to surf because of it. The message of that movie is what motivated her on the field. Recently, we’ve talked about Bethany’s desire to surf regardless of her accident. We talked about how nothing stopped Bethany from doing what she loved the most. And we talked about Bethany’s faith. She knew what she was meant to do. God has given her a gift. Now, she uses that gift to minister to people around the world. It’s a very inspiring story from such a young girl. And it spoke to my daughter.

Twice in the last week God has shown me He is working in the hearts of my children. Honestly, I forget that. I think I have to do it all. I think I’m the one putting things in their hearts. Oh God is gracious enough to use me but He is the one doing the real work. My efforts would be better spent training my children to see the Hand of God instead of just telling them about Him. I forget they are capable of seeing God just as I am. I forget He is working. And I forget He knows what will inspire them.

I am so happy for my daughter not because she played great soccer, but because God inspired her. He used the story of a girl we will probably never meet to encourage my daughter. I love how imaginative our Creator is. I love the fact that He loves my daughter more than I do. I am amazed once again that each and every story He writes in our lives has a purpose. They are not random. They are not wasted. They are used by a loving God who desires to use us in motivating those around us. He even uses young girls to encourage other young girls. How inspiring.

“Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great 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. Let us fix our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy set before him endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.” (Heb. 12:1-2 NIV)

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