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Something to Cheer About

When it comes to making someone happy, you can start small…

Michelle Medlock Adams

Do to others as you would have them do to you. (Luke 6:31, NIV)

Our girls had performed well all day at the Bedford North Lawrence Cheerleading Clinic, and Abby and I were beaming. As cheer coaches of the Shawswick Elementary 2013-2014 Cheerleaders, my daughter and I couldn’t wait for the awards portion of the day to begin.

We had worked with our seven girls for several weeks, practicing our competition cheer and perfecting motion technique. We had quite a bit of talent on our squad, so we were also expecting some individual awards.

As the music began and the BNL cheerleaders fired up the elementary cheerleaders, coaches, and parents who had just arrived for the awards presentation, I whispered to Abby, “I just hope that all of our girls get something–a spirit award–something.” She nodded in agreement.

Chelsea and Trista.After all of the hoopla and grandstanding, our squad won an award for most creative home cheer, as well as a spirit stick for exuding school spirit.

Also, three of our seven cheerleaders won individual awards–Kennedy won a best jumper award; Ally won a spirit ribbon; and Chelsea earned a best gymnast medal.

As we took pictures of our girls with their group awards and individual merits, I noticed one of our 4th graders, Trista, wasn’t as “spirited” at usual. In fact, she seemed quite depressed.

I was just about to ask her about it when Chelsea, one of our individual award winners and a 5th grade squad member, put her arm around Trista’s shoulder and asked, “What’s wrong?”

“I just wish I could’ve won an award,” Trista said, with big tears in her eyes.

Without missing a beat, Chelsea handed Trista the “Best Gymnast” award and said, “You can have this one. I have others at home because I compete with an All Star squad.”

Trista hesitated, not sure if she should accept it, but Chelsea insisted.

“Go ahead,” she urged. “It’s yours.”

Trista hugged Chelsea and then literally bounced away (like Tigger from Winnie the Pooh) to show her mom the award, and I stood there in amazement at the selfless act I’d just witnessed. At that moment, I so wished I’d had an extra-special award to give Chelsea for her kind heart.

I’m not sure if anyone else saw what Chelsea did that afternoon, but I saw and it inspired me. Later, I told Chelsea how proud I was of her, and she smiled and sort of brushed it off, not wanting me to make a big deal of it.

But it was a big deal. Though Chelsea thought it was just a small gesture, it put a big smile on Trista’s face, and it made a big impression on me. Coaches love that kind of stuff!

And, so does God.

How long has it been since you’ve done something selfless, without wanting any recognition, just to bless another person? If it’s been a while, why not do something today?

Pay for the person’s coffee behind you in line at the Starbucks drive-through, or rake your neighbor’s leaves before he gets home from work. Or, take a bag of dog food and cat food to the local animal shelter. Or, simply take time to appreciate someone’s efforts.

Like Chelsea, you may think it’s a small gesture of kindness, but it might make a big impact.

So, go ahead.

Make someone’s day today. 

Pray this with me: “Father, help me to have a kind heart. And, Lord, help me to be sensitive to your leading that I might not miss any opportunity to be a blessing. In the Mighty Name of Jesus, Amen.”

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