“This can’t be the end.”
Those words flashed through my mind as our soccer team humbly walked toward us with the participation trophy in hand. My eyes locked on our son, and my buried emotions matched his tears. Except for some reason, none of my tears escaped.
It was a hard fought battle. I had never witnessed our boys playing that determined ever before. I watched with pride as our son did all he could to make a difference out on that field. I admired his aggressiveness, his tenacity, his determination. But despite their disciplined efforts for 80 minutes, the final score was not what we all hoped (and what I prayed) for. We lost by two.
These boys made school history being the first team ever to appear in the high school soccer state tournament. Ever. They had nothing to hang their heads about. But the disappointment of not moving on to the semi-finals, and the reality of a successful season ending, was a heaviness everyone felt. Especially the seniors.
I could only imagine the feelings welling up inside of our son.
Thirteen years of soccer came to an abrupt finish as the game-ending whistle blew. Thirteen years of kicking the ball around with most of these buddies came to a finale. It’s one of those experiences you know is coming, but you just can’t quite prepare yourself for. With that whistle also came the end of his senior year. His teammates extended hugs to each other, as their tears mixed with beads of sweat. These guys were more than a team. They were family. The stands filled with fans, family, and friends emptied onto the field to greet these hometown heroes.
It’s no wonder our son couldn’t stop the tears. And there was no need to. Every tear was deserved.
Soccer has been his thing since he was five years old. He’s had a ball at his feet for as long as I can remember. (We have the marks on our walls to prove it.) It has been his passion, his joy, his sport.
As I hugged him as tight as any mom could, I recalled how we talked and prayed together before he left that morning. We prayed for God’s will for the outcome of the game. (Yes, God even cares about soccer when it involves His own. He cares about what matters to you, too.) We prayed for God’s protection, grace, and His favor for our son. We even prayed for God to be glorified through our son’s presence on the field.
God answered all of those prayers.
Our son was given a gift this year… to be on two championship teams: Show choir and soccer. Two incredible seasons that most will never get to experience in a lifetime, let alone in one’s senior year. I believe this last year of high school, and the amazing moments he experienced in it, will be embedded in his mind forever. God blessed him in so many wonderful, amazing and beautiful ways.
With an end, comes a new beginning. I look forward to seeing what God has planned next for him. Thank you from the bottom of my heart for sharing in our joy and for journeying with us!
(Soccer pic photo credit: T Marie Portraits & Photo Booth)
Looking for more?
Enter your email to instantly access my FREE RESOURCES - exclusively for my readers!
Your information is safe with me and will never be shared.