There are two moments in your life when you will remember where you were and who stood beside you: standing in the midst of adversity and experiencing the supernatural. There is a bond which forms in these situations, a bond no one can sever, it transcends time and place. Interestingly enough, the experience of the supernatural is correlated with how we respond to adversity, challenges, or face difficulty. Some will choose to walk away, others will wait, most will talk about it. Few are bold enough to stand on the edge of adversity and take a step of faith. They will face the darkness because they ARE the light. And these few will share the pride, the distinction and honor of being in the supernatural.
This past Friday night I attended an annual hockey marathon at my high school. Participating in the event after so many years reminded me of such a time in my life when struck by tragedy, a few stood strong to be part of something truly spectacular. In 1994, a fellow teammate was killed in a car accident leaving a night game against our county rivals. Just Freshman in high school, my teammates and I watched as our Seniors faced losing a friend, classmate and sister in uniform. Everyday on the way to practice walking past the trophy case, where jersey #26 hangs in remembrance, reminded us of the strength and courage of her parents, coaches, and teammates demonstrated. It instilled in us a drive to value one another on and off the field, that no day should be taken for granted. To this day, those who were part of the SHS Field Hockey Team that year still keep in touch.
As I sat on the same wooden bleachers, overlooking the same hardwood floors we played on so many years ago, I looked up at the felt banners toting successes past. My eyes stopped on two of them: County and Division Champions. In bright orange, the year 1997 stood out, only one team in the past 15 years had such an accomplishment. The year was our senior year. My attention turned back to the purpose of the night - we were gathered to play in memory of Alicia Lenker, our fallen teammate. We stood alongside other members of the team and thought back on the events of that fateful night looking at a group of high schoolers about to play in a hockey tournament in memorandum of someone they had never met. After 18 years, two generations all shared a common thread of one young life. The somberness resonated with both generations.
The inspiration Alicia had on our graduating class directly impacted our desire to play harder and work as a team. It led us to several championships and accomplishments beyond our capacity. Now as alumni, stepping out to play again so many years later, it was as though nothing had changed. Adversity had made us stronger, the supernatural gave us in something to bond us forever.
This made me consider other situations when facing adversity leads to the supernatural. When those few bold individuals stand up to take action in spite of the opposition. They experience something the others will never understand and they will never be the same as before.
The man in uniform who hugs his wife one last time before he steps off the dock onto battleship. He will gladly face the enemy if it means saving the life of the person next to him. At home, no one can comfort his anxious family except those who share their sacrifice.
A husband and wife who must face lost hope, comforted only by their own love and commitment to a life lived for one another.
Friends, coworkers and neighbors step in to help when disaster strikes, bond in the shadow of tragedy.
These stories inspire us to be better people, to help our fellow person, but do we ignore the call when we stand on the edge of adversity in our present moment? What could be made better if you took one step beyond what you see in front of you? When you find yourself in that place, step out in faith, the supernatural waits just on the other side. Keep digging! The imagination can not fully know the impact it will have on you and the person standing beside you. God gives us strength and courage to take a stand; He gives us one another in order to ensure we do not fall.
Think better. Feel better. Live Better.