I fell in love with “The Beautiful Sport” at a young age. For those of you that think it’s football you are correct however I like to pronounce it as fútbol. If you’re still confused… the sport is soccer. I loved the sport but I had the least glamorous job, the one no one wanted… yup I was goalie. I went to the practices, I did the drills, kicked the ball around to end up at the front and make goals. To my dismay game day would come and I was stuck in the back. I would stand there for what seemed like hours (only 45 minutes) and wait for the ball to come even remotely close to my location. I loathed that position as a child, I was so frustrated with it sometimes I would just let the ball roll in because I was upset I was stuck back there.
Despite my initial terrible career, one of my favorite and most vivid memories was a game that my mom attended. I was eight years old and—once again–stuck in the back. It was a beautiful soccer Sunday and everyone was pumped: except for me. First couple of minutes into the game someone was coming towards me. Everyone on the sidelines jumped on their feet as I blocked the ball. Ok maybe not everyone but my mom sure did. I kicked it out and all the attention was taken over to the other side. Second half of the game was uneventful on my end, everyone scooted over towards the other side cheering on the forwards that were inches away from scoring. While I was standing there contemplating picking up grass blades I heard a familiar voice to my left; my mother who had no idea about the sport of soccer was waving her hand, jumping up and down and yelling in a heavy accent (the kind where English is your second language) “YEII GOO CHANI!” I find myself reminiscing about this moment in times of difficulty, confusion, frustration, or loneliness. I just replay that bright face and the sound of sheer happiness, and pride, cheering me on and leaving me with so much confusion. What was my mother thinking? There was nothing going on my end; I was probably thinking I was playing a horrible game and my mother was cheering out of place at the top of her lungs. The only possible explanation… the love of a mother. It didn’t matter whether I was succeeded or not, all that mattered was that I was her child, no matter what I did or didn’t do, I was already loved.
Isaiah 49:15 has left me in tears time and time again. “Can a woman forget her nursing child. And not have compassion on the son of her womb?” I’ve been reading about the incredible bond that formed between a mother and their child postpartum. Large levels of oxytocin also known as the “feel good” hormone being released and positive affirmation and love is being translated over onto a tiny being—how could a mother just abandon their child? But the verse isn’t done: surely, they may forget, yet I will not forget you.” Wow—one of the closest human bonds on earth and God’s love exceeds it. Even if a mother who holding her to her newborn innocent, pure and perfect child may leave them, God never will. We are already loved.
So now wherever you are in life, take a quick break—whether you feel overwhelmed with work and life, your feeling as if your self-confidence is a bit low, you’re having a great summer or feeling lonely just stop… look over to your left… and hear God cheering for you. You’re already loved.
Chantal Williams recently graduated from Andrews University as a doctor of physical therapy, and has been involved with Enspire Productions since 2011.