By Del Duduit
You never know what impact your generosity or interest will have on a person’s life.
That is why you must, in all circumstances, do your best to leave a positive influence on people you meet. You may encounter someone once in your life, or have an opportunity to develop a relationship with someone. No matter the case, act as if you are under the microscope because you might be just what the person needs.
Over my life, I’m sure there are those whom I have upset or let down. For that, I am sorry. But there are also folks I know who have been inspired by my words, which humbles me and fuels my fire.
Lately, I’ve received some wonderful notes from individuals who have read some of my posts. To the left is one.
And Bill Robinson, the men’s basketball coach at Milligan College in Tennessee, knows firsthand how taking an interest in a person who has given up on life, can change them forever for the best.
Bill attended the NCAA Men’s Final Four in San Antonio in 2008 as a spectator. He preferred to arrive at games early since the effects of Sept. 11, 2001, had slowed security.
At this particular venue, for some reason, he didn’t wait long at all to enter the Alamo Dome.
He got to his seat about an hour before tip-off, and there was a man in a seat next to him wearing a Rutgers shirt. Bill thought this was neat since he’s also from New Jersey.
“I told him I was born in Atlantic City, and he told me he worked in Atlantic City,” Bill told me after the Athletes in Action Coach’s Forum in San Antonio a few weeks ago. “We struck up a conversation from there.”
The two conversed, and soon it was time for the game to begin.
The man asked Bill if he played ball in Atlantic City, and he told him, yes, but the school he attended was small and obscure.
“I said I went to a small Christian school, and I graduated with 13 people,” Bill said. When he mentioned the name of the school, the man informed Bill that his two sons had also graduated from the same institution.
Bill went on to say his mother worked there for 25 years and told him her name.
“His face went blank,” Bill said. “And at that point, I got a little scared.”
The man told Bill that his mother changed his son’s life forever.
He told the story of how his child was in the eighth grade and had no interest in academics or anything else. Bill’s mother took the time to represent the essential needs a good education can have and took the boy under her wing.
The young man not only graduated but later went on to graduate school in Chicago and pursued a degree in school counseling.
Bill got up to go call his mother, and the man went to call his son.
“I told Mom that she had no idea what an impact she had on that boy,” Bill said. “And we as coaches don’t know, and will probably never know the influence we can have on our players until we get to heaven.”
Bill’s mom took time to show she cared to a person who lost his interest in life. And with a little guidance, the young man developed a passion to succeed and help others.
Out of about 46,000 people, God saw fit to put these two men together in the same arena on the same day who had a connection for a reason — His glory. This was not a coincidence— this was divinely designed.
“But do good and to communicate forget not; for with such sacrifices God is well pleased.”
HEBREWS 13: 16
As a follower of Christ, you never know what opportunity you will have to influence a person to travel in the right direction. You don’t have to be a preacher or even a teacher, but you can shine a light and inspire.
I try to do that with my posts. I get an occasional negative note, and that is expected. But some correspondence leaves me encouraged.
Thank you to those who take a moment to retweet my blogs and send me positive messages like the one on at left.
Follow me on Twitter here.
You, the reader, make a difference in my life and ministry when you respond. You give me the boost I need at times to continue after the devil has launched an attack on me. Your notes of encouragement always seem to come at the right time.
“And let us not be weary in well doing; for in due season we shall reap if we faint not.”
GALATIANS 6: 9
The lesson here is to show love and support whenever the opportunity presents itself. One day, you may see the results of your kindness.
What about you?
Have you missed chances to show someone love because it was an inconvenience? Will you take the next opportunity to give a kind word? You’ll never know the good it can do or what results it may have in the future.
What story will your son or daughter have to share about you 10 years from now?
Del Duduit is an award-winning writer and author who lives in Lucasville, Ohio with his wife, Angie. They attend Rubyville Community Church. Follow his blog at delduduit.com/blog and his Twitter @delduduit. He is represented by Cyle Young of Hartline Literary Agency.
His first book — BUCKEYE BELIEVER – 40 Days of Devotions for The Ohio State Faithful –can be purchased on Amazon here.