(photo credit: www.lovethispic.com)
Most of us here in the South love college football. One of my favorite things to watch every Saturday in the fall is “College GameDay” on ESPN, which is a 3 hour pre-game program previewing all the big games, broadcast live from a particular college football town that will host one of those games. One of the main reasons I love the show so much is that it highlights some great heartwarming “behind the scenes” stories. Stories that touch your heart because they spotlight the universal humanity behind the players and coaches.
I’m not sure if “College GameDay” ever featured this story, but they should have. I was reading this morning about a little girl, Jesse Sloan, who is a big fan of the Mississippi State Bulldogs. After one game during the 2015 season, when she was three years old, she was waiting after the game to give the players what she called “five fives”, or high fives to you and me. One of the players, Donald Gray, gave her a high five, said she was cute, and then asked for a hug. The little girl obliged by reached out her arms.
Ever since then, the two formed an incredible bond. Donald couldn’t wait to see her after every game. He started calling her “his best girl” and she started wearing a little jersey with his number and the words “Donald Gray’s Best Girl” to every game. As he wrapped up his senior season this fall, he had to say goodbye to little Jesse. It was a moment that left all who witnessed it in tears. The two vowed with a pinkie promise to remain best friends.
Now you can read the FULL STORY HERE, but what I want us all to take from this story is this: Opportunities like this happen all the time in our lives. Whether it’s an encouraging word, a hug, a kind gesture, or whatever you feel led to do, we can all “be the reason someone smiles today”. And that is one of the main reasons we are here on this planet. To touch lives, to make a difference, and in some cases, form a life long bond with a pinkie promise.
So, look around you for an opportunity to be the reason someone smiles today!