We’re talking about honor this month in Kidquake. It dawned on me that today we don’t use that word very much (hopefully not because there is no honor any more!). Many of the kids — ranging in ages from Kindergarten to 5th grade — didn’t know what honor was.
Jack Hoffman is an elementary school kid in Nebraska. At the age of seven, he was diagnosed with brain cancer. Talk about a tough break for a kid…. Jack struck up a friendship with a couple of Nebraska football players and word got back to Head Coach Bo Pelini. Coach Pelini invited Jack and his family to be his special guests at the Nebraska spring game back in April. He told Jack that he would be on the sideline and decked out the youngster with a full Nebraska uniform.
In the fourth quarter, Coach Pelini put Jack in the game at running back. Young Jack got the ball on the next play and ran 70 yards for a touchdown. I’m not sure anyone in the stands saw him score because it is real hard to see through tears.
Bo Pelini is a busy man as a Big 10 football coach. His job is pressure packed worrying about how to beat Ohio State and Michigan. He certainly could be pardoned for not taking the time to reach out to the Hoffman family. And he certainly could be given a pass for not putting Jack in the game. But he put all that aside to honor a kid fighting against the odds and give him a moment in the sun.
David had become king of Israel. He certainly had a lot on his plate. However, when he became king, he asked a very important question as recorded in 2 Samuel 9:1:
David asked, “Is there anyone still left of the house of Saul to whom I can show kindness for Jonathan’s sake?”
David had respected Saul who held the position before him and had been best friends with Saul’s son Jonathan. Because of that love and respect, David went out of his way to honor a member of the family after Saul and Jonathan were tragically lost.
The Bible tells us that Mephibosheth was Jonathan’s son. He was crippled and unable to care for himself. David took Mephibosheth in and cared for his needs — even inviting him to eat at the king’s table.
David didn’t have to do this. Goodness knows there were important issues to tend to. But David, in seeking God’s direction, went the extra mile to honor a man that society had probably forgotten.
As members of God’s family, we should seek the same direction. Let me challenge you today. Before the sun goes down, do at least one unexpected gesture to honor someone. I promise you that there is someone in your path today that you could show kindness to.
And I thought you’d want to know that last week it was announced that Jack Hoffman’s cancer was now in remission. I can’t wait to see what Jack’s “next” is…
Johns Creek Baptist Church