Monday, January 09, 2012
So, unless you are a mole, living in a hole, you've heard of Tim Tebow by now. Even if you aren't a fan of the Broncos, don't care for football, and really only watch the Superbowl for either the half-time show or commercials or attend the parties just for the food, I would guess if you live in America, at the least, you've heard of the fall season game centered around a pig-skin where a bunch of guys crunch into one another and even more people, called fans, paint themselves and go berserk every weekend and Monday night as onlookers.
If you still don't know what I'm talking about, forget about it.
For those of you still reading, I think this is pretty cool.
So, in November I met a family, friends of friends, who was spending time at Craig Hospital, a top facility here in Denver specializing in spinal cord and brain injury and rehabilitation. Their 17 year old son was here learning a whole new way of living after an accident.
Before I called or met the family face to face, I really felt strongly that our family was to reach out to them. I've had a bit of history with hospital living, you might say, so wanted to encourage them in any way they needed.
I gave the mom a call and we talked a bit. She was so sweet and kind, saying they didn't need anything at all, but after a bit more time, she was open to us coming by with dinner. I asked her how long they thought they'd be here in Denver.
She said until January 12th.
I got a little choked up because in my heart I knew it was God's way of saying, "I told you I wanted you to reach out to them...if that date's not a sign, then you are slower than I thought..." Or something like that ;)
Anyway, over the last month and a half as we've gotten to know them a little, I also learned another common date we share: Yesterday...that is, besides it having been Elvis' birthday, it was my 40th and their son's 18th. Before Christmas his mom had told me that he hoped to be home in time for his birthday.
When we got back from Mexico (we went for 8 days over Christmas and enjoyed the sun and quiet non-commercialism...more about that in another post) I called to see how they were all doing and his mom said they had flights home for the 6th. Such great news since that was 6 days early and he'd be home with other family and friends in time to celebrate his 18th Birthday! What a milestone!
Ryan and I headed up last week to catch one more lunch with them before they flew home.
As we ate I asked him how it felt to turn down the most famous man in the NFL.
He humbly and quietly smiled, saying, "I just really want to go home."
You see, Tebow (well, his people) had given this guy a pass to yesterday's play-off game and the opportunity to meet Tim face to face...and as cool as that would have been for an 18th birthday gift (heck, my 9 year old daughter who didn't really like football until the last few games thought it was even cool...), it would have extended his already long stay here in Denver by a couple more days.
It's a generous gesture, but what I've gathered from Tebow's heart over the last several months and all the media reports, I'm guessing and would even bank on it, that Tim Tebow would have cheered this guy on, saying, "Go home, man! I'll be praying for you!"