This is our Bell.
She’s her own person.
She has the same brown eyes and brown hair as her older sister, but there are a number of differences.
She’s not tall.
I haven’t measured her lately, but I believe she’s 5’2″.
Don’t ask me her weight, I truly don’t know, but she’s got muscle all over.
She’s fairly quiet.
She doesn’t mind chatting with others about everyday things, but when it comes to anything deep or emotional she reserves her comments until she knows exactly what she wants to say.
She can be just a little blunt from time to time, yet it is not seasoned with malice.
Like everyone, Bell has things she’s not too happy about in herself, and works to gain control over them.
She’s an athlete.
When she was in first grade she played soccer for one year.
Then I put all the girls in dance school and said sports was on hold.
She enjoyed dance and thrived.
The year we moved back to the US she played softball and loved it.
The following year their team was undefeated the entire year.
Then she joined track and basketball.
It was much closer to home and when I had a conflict with scheduling the school ran a bus so she had to give up softball.
Yet she found a love for track and basketball.
As our family was so blessed to watch our oldest girl run at the State Track and Field our Bell spoke to me on the way home.
“Next year when I’m in high school, my goal is to make it to State.”
She has been working hard all track season in an effort to keep her goal.
She’s well aware of the stiff competition.
I’ve told her Freshman rarely make State.
Yet everything hung on the District meet in Bend.
If she could get 1st or 2nd in either of her races she’d go.
And she did.
Despite her being ranked at 4th place before the race she took 2nd.
I was surprised to hear from her coach the next day.
He called to let me know she’d made it to State in the long jump!
I was surprised.
She had jumped her best jump ever at the meet, but I didn’t think it was good enough.
So after yesterday’s meet where she jumped in the long jump and ran the preliminary race in the 400 she turned to me.
“God has really blessed me.”
I smiled and reached over to place my hand on her.
“Yes He certainly has.”
Her next words surprised me.
“How do I let people know that I’m just a vessel God is using? After I race people say, ‘Good job!’ and all I can do is say thanks between breaths.”
“Honey, you tell people about God’s blessing in the other times, those moments when people say, ‘I read your name in the paper.'”
It wasn’t until this morning I began to see another side of the whole affair.
She was able to make the cut and will be running today in the 400, but she didn’t say much about her poor turn out in the long jump. She didn’t even jump a personal record.
She was nervous and her footing off the board wasn’t the best.
Yet as she spoke of the long jump it was the joy of friends she’s made who were also jumping.
In her reflections at the end of the day she didn’t show the least bit of disappointment or discouragement.
She was simply thankful to God for His blessing her with the ability to get this far.
This humility in our Bell has prompted me to look closer at my own heart.
Am I thankful for the blessings or just eager to attain more?
Am I thoughtful as to how to give glory back to God for His gifts or simply smug in the face of those around me?
God forbid that I ever take the credit for His hand in my life.
As I spend my morning in prayer for our day I smile.
What a blessing to have such a humble daughter.
What a gift to be able to watch our daughter compete at any level.
What a joy to hear her praise God for His gifts!
I can say it:
“God has really blessed me!”