Friday, August 29th, 2014
Be a Cheerleader – And Change the World
The final days of summer are waning as leisurely days at the beach give way to morning bus routines and classroom lessons. My children attend Rosman High School, the same small school from which I graduated. Since my days of roaming the halls, the cafeteria has been promoted from the basement to a new expansion above ground. Teachers have changed and classrooms have moved, but the school still carries the wonderful small town sense of community and friends. Friday night football games are packed out with local “Tiger” fans decked out in their orange and black. It is not uncommon to find the bleachers filled to capacity at a volleyball match or basketball game. Support from the community is fantastic when parents and fans are cheering students from the sidelines, and I love seeing the school spirit that resonates at our local school and countless others like it across the country.
As I left last week’s football game, I began pondering this simple question, “What about after the game?” … What about those times when the fanfare is missing, when no crowds are watching, and the student is pondering a significant life decision? What about the young man or woman who has no team to call his or her own? What about the loner, the student who fades into the background? What about the rebel, the one who gets lots of attention but for all the wrong reasons? Where is the community support for these young men and women?
While debates rage about common core, school funding, and countless other issues affecting our education system, I challenge each of us to get involved in some small way to be a cheerleader and a coach for a young person. Our young people are crying out for leadership. Much of what we as adults pass judgment on as “poor behavior”, “lack of work ethic”, or “entitlement” in today’s youth is actually a reflection of our failure to step up to the plate and provide sound leadership, coaching, direction, and support. Kids need role models. They hunger for that adult who is willing to give of herself, to offer a needed word of encouragement, and to invest time in showing them the way.
Let’s add a little more to our cheering from the bleachers…it’s time to personalize those cheers so that every young man and woman has a least one voice cheering them forward to win in life.
Inspire a young person…influence a community…and impact the world one life at at time.
To your success,