It was one of the hardest days of my young life. I was a 13 year old freshman trying out for the high school football team. It was the first day of full contact in helmets and pads and my 110 pound body had been knocked to the ground more times than I could count. It had become clear as the practice went on that there was no way I was ever going to be able to compete against the bigger, faster, and stronger boys. My dream of being a high school football star had been crashed to the ground along with my bruised and battered body.
I made it home sore, sullen, and sad and my Mom met me at the door. She could see I was troubled in a glance and had me sit at the kitchen table. I think she knew all along what was going to happen that day. She warmed me up a bowl of soup to hold me until dinner. While I sipped at its warm broth I felt her hand gently rubbing my aching back. We never said a word, but by the time the soup was done I was feeling better again. I knew I was loved and that was all that mattered.
I have carried that memory in my heart all of these years. Even today, no matter what problems or difficulties life throws at me a bowl of soup always raises my spirits. Sometimes I can even feel Mom’s gentle hand rubbing my back from Heaven and see her beautiful face smiling down on me with love.
In this world all of us have had our dreams crashed to the ground at one time or another. Sometimes it takes a lot of broken dreams until we find our true purpose in life too. God is always there, though, to comfort us, to remind us that we are loved, and to help us back to our feet again. May you always rejoice in the love God has for you and may you always share your own love freely be it with a kind act, a gentle touch, or even a bowl of soup.
Joseph J. Mazzella [email protected]