Few seconds remain on the clock, the home team is down by one and their free throw shooter is up for two shots for the win. We’ve all seen this scene many times but not this particular one. This free throw shooter is blind. The crowd is silenced to a pin drop. The cheerleaders are still, and all you can hear is the tapping of a cane underneath the goal by the coach…the free throw shooters brother. He takes the first shot and swoosh the shot goes in tieing the game. The crowd cheers in disbelief but gains control and goes silent again hoping for another basket. Everyone on the team and in the crowd can see except Matt Steven, a high school senior at Upper Darby, PA. He listens for his brother’s tapping of the cane and takes the second shot…SWOOSH the ball goes in and the crowd goes wild. The visitors get the rebound and throws a Hail Mary at the other basket and misses. Matt is the game hero trying to make it back to the bench and who comes to help him…BIG BROTHER.
I read this true story account this week in the book, “You’ll Get Through This” by Max Lucado that my mother-in-law left behind as a gift for her son. I have only been able to read one chapter at a time as there are so many nuggets of truth to process and take away. This chapter started with this 2009 Inspirational ESPN story but ended with an even more inspirational truth that hit home for me this Thanksgiving week. Big brothers can make all the difference. I love the way Max paints the picture of what a big brother is, “Got bullies on your block? Big brother can protect you. Forgot your lunch money? Big brother has some extra. Can’t keep your balance on your bike? He’ll steady you. Call your big brother. Big brother. Bigger than you. Stronger. Wiser. Since he is family you are his priority. He has one job: to get you through things. Through the neighborhood, without getting lost; through the math quiz, without failing; through the shopping mall, without stopping. Big brothers walk us through the rough patches of life. Need one?”
I’ve never had a big brother, but I am a big sister and do understand the desire to protect her and keep her safe from the ugly of this world. My heart yearns to help her get through this life and all of its curve balls that it throws. As much as I try, I often fall short but we all have a BIG BROTHER that never does.
“He stretched out His hand toward His disciples and said, ‘Here are My mother and My brothers! For whoever does the will of My Father in heaven is My brother and sister and mother'” (Matthew 12:49-50).
Wow! He claimed us as His own. Jesus redefined his family to include all who come near him. What a remarkable gift to have a big brother who always has my back. Who helps see me through my darkest days and who longs for me to draw near to him. I can count on him and you can too.
This Thanksgiving looks different for my family. There will be empty chairs, but we have invited more to join us to bring more JOY to the table. I stayed up last night making an ALL BUTTER cake, a cake Ryan’s mom used to make. We will enjoy this recipe for years to come and we are grateful. There are many of you who have a family member that will be missing from your table for the first time. I am so sorry for your loss. Some of us are experiencing brokenness of family. I am so sorry for your brokenness. But we all have been given a BIG BROTHER that invites us to draw near to him. I pray as you gather around your Thanksgiving tables today that you will draw near to the best gift we have ever been given. I love that we can call Him our Savior, Lord, Father, Abba, Friend and now BIG BROTHER! It was in His perfect timing that I read this chapter this week to know that we belong to the GREATEST family!
I love these final words of the chapter, “You will get through this. Not because you are strong but because your Brother is. Not because you are good but because your Brother is. Not because you are big but because your big Brother is the Prince, and he has a place prepared for you.
Happy THANKSGIVING to all our Friends and Family! We do have so much to be THANKFUL for!!! Blessings always!!! #gloryup