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“In My Father’s Eyes.”

There was a football-mad boy who lived all alone with his father, and the two of them had a very special relationship. Even though the son was always a substiute on the bench, his father was always in the stands cheering him on. He never missed a game. This young man was still the smallest of the class when he entered secondary school. His father continued to encourage him and also made it very clear that he did not have to play football if he didn't want to. But the young boy loved football and he was determined to try his best at every practice, and perhaps he'd get to actually play a game when he joined the sixth form.

All through the sixth form he never missed a practice nor a game, but remained a bench warmer and substitute for two whole years. His faithful father was always in the stands, always with words of encouragement for him. When the young man now went to university, he decided to try out for the football team as a "walk-on." Everyone was sure he could never make the team, but he did. The coach admitted that he wanted him in the team because he always puts his heart and soul to every practice, and at the same time, provided the other members with the spirit and hustle they badly needed.

The news that he was still in the team thrilled him so much that he rushed to the nearest phone and called his father. His father shared his excitement and the young man sent him season tickets for all the university games. This persistent young footballer never missed a practice during his three years at university, but he never got to play a single game. It was now the end of his last football season and the end of his university career and, as he trotted onto the practice field shortly before the big final game, the coach met him with a special telegram. The young man read the telegram and he became deathly silent. Swallowing hard, he mumbled to the coach, "My father died this morning. Is it all right if I miss this practice today?" It would be the first practice he had ever missed in his life.

The coach put his arm gently around his shoulder and said, "Take the rest of the week off, son. And don't even plan to come back to the big game on Saturday if you donÕt want to.Ó Then Saturday arrived, and the big game was not going very well at all. In the last quarter of an hour, when the team was two goals behind, a silent young man quietly slipped into the empty changing room and put on his football gear. As he ran onto the touchline and sat on the subs bench, the coach and his players were astounded to see their faithful teammate had come back so soon.

"Coach, please let me play. I've just got to play today," said the young man. The coach pretended not to hear him. There was no way he wanted his worst player in this final big game. But the young man persisted, and finally feeling sorry for him, the coach gave in. "All right," he said. "You can go on for the last ten minutes.

Before long, the coach, the players and everyone in the stands could not believe their eyes. This little unknown, who had never played before was doing everything right. The opposing team could not stop him. He ran, he passed, blocked and tackled like a star. His team began to triumph. The score was soon level at two-all. In the closing seconds of the game, this nobody intercepted a pass and ran all the way to the goalmouth, twisting and turing around everyone and lobbed a well-placed shot straight passed the goalkeeper to make it three two for his team. Just then the final whistle blew and all the fans broke loose, shouting and cheering and running out onto the field. His teammates hoisted him onto their shoulders. Such cheering you've never heard! Finally, after the stands had emptied and the team had showered and left the changing room, the coach noticed that the young man was sitting quietly in the corner all alone.

The coach came to him and said, "Hey, man, I can't believe it. You were fantastic! Tell me what got into you? How did you do it?" He looked at the coach, with tears in his eyes, and said, "Well, you knew my dad died, but did you know that my dad was blind?" The young man swallowed hard and forced a smile, "Dad came to all my games, but today was the first time he could see me play, and I wanted to show him how welI I could do it!"



is very proud of you.
is thinking of you.
is caring about you.
misses you.
wants to talk to you.
wants to be with you.
hopes you are not in trouble.
is thankful for the support you have provided.
hopes everything turns out all right.
wants you to be happy.
thinks you ARE a gift.
admires your strength.
wants to protect you.
loves you for who you are.
treasures your spirit.
wants to be near you.
wants you to know they are there for you.
would do anything for you.
needs you to have faith in them.
trusts in you.
Someone, somewhere will cry when they read or hear this story.

Original author unknown




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