I love hearing from my former players and one who kind of stays in contact is the young lady who the following story revolves around. This is from March 8, 2009.
Even though our basketball season is over in terms of games, we still practice first period every morning. One of the young ladies on my team is Summer, a delightful seventh grader. Of all the girls in our middle school program, Summer is probably most like me in demeanor .....and in losing stuff. On Friday, I had to put another practice jersey on her school bill as her mesh top has mysteriously disappeared- and not for the first time. Last Thursday, we were in the second round of our two-on-two tournament. The players are seeded 1-16 by the more experienced girls and we base teams on those rankings. Summer was paired with Jada and they were playing against the eventual champions, Autumn and Laura. (You might notice we have a number of girls named after seasons.) Without warning, play stopped and Summer let out a moan. Her lip was sliced open and blood was gushing out. Summer wears braces and as the result of some contact, the wires gashed her. She's a tough kid and didn't cry but I, and some of the kids, looked away. We got her to the nurse quickly and there was no long term damage. Summer was back on the floor Friday, sporting her new practice top along with one more bit of equipment; her plastic mouth guard which was designed to prevent incidents like the one we witnessed Thursday. I hope she remembers to wear the mouthpiece, which I know is uncomfortable. I hate the sight of blood.
This morning, in commenting before communion in our Chinese worship, I noted the Bible teaches that forgiveness of sin requires the shedding of blood. Under the Law Of Moses, the Israelites offered animal sacrifices to the Lord but those animals did not volunteer for the honor. In our society, we see those who cause others to bleed as being evil and we try to protect ourselves and our loved ones from shedding our own blood. But one incredible aspect of Jesus' sacrifice for me is that He willingly did what I am loathe to do- bleed. And He did it for a world that treats His death casually or apathetically. We are upset when children and basketball players bleed, and rightly so, but we too often undervalue the precious blood of Jesus. That blood has washed away the sins of the believers of each succeeding generations. In a climate of disappearing treasures and declining values, we can be sure of this: The blood of Jesus can never be stripped of its inestimable worth.
(PS: Summer is # 20 for the Lady Wildcats in the above picture.)
Applicable quote of the day:
"Human blood is heavy; the man that has shed it cannot run away”
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