A little brother’s track meet

my little brother turned 14 on monday. he’s a stud and an awesome human being. i wish i was more like him.

i went to his track meet and i noticed something interesting: the crowd.

you see, the crowd only cheers for a few people:

  • the dominator – in the mile race, there was an 8th grader who was awesome. he ran ahead of the pack and beat everyone. he extended his lead with each passing turn and his race was beautiful. it wasn’t even close, there was no competition, but people from both schools cheered him down the home stretch.
  • the worst kid – in that same race, there was a 6th grader who got lapped. he was slow, sluggish, and continually ran slower and slower as the race progressed. He dropped back further and further with each lap. he got a bigger ovation than the dominator.
  • the comeback – in the mile race, there was a heated battle for 5th and 6th place. it ended in a sprint down the home stretch. most of the crowd stood up for this photo finish. people love a good story. people love a comeback.
  • their kid – every mom screams for her kid like it is the most important thing on earth. grandmas and grandpas yell for their grand kids. siblings urge each other onward. it doesn’t matter where you are in the race or in placing, your family – those closest to you – cheer you on.

there are those of us in ministry who are very attracted to ministering to those in the first 3 categories. it is awesome to have the “super-jock” in your youth group. it is a great story to have a “down-and-out” student in your group.

but i would say that unconditional love can only be shown if we view those we minister to as part of the 4th category – family.


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