A Great Lesson From Little Jack Hoffman

Neal Pollard

It was ESPN’s number one among its Top Ten plays for over the weekend.  I saw it yesterday morning and was frankly moved to tears.  Jack Hoffman, a 7-year-old battling brain cancer, was given the handoff in Saturday’s Nebraska Spring football game.  He ran 60 yards for a touchdown (see it here).  Everyone, the offense, the defense, and those on the bench ran behind him and congregated in the end zone in celebration of the boy’s accomplishment.  60,000 fans at Memorial Stadium stood up and cheered.

Jack is on a break from 60 weeks of chemotherapy, and he has undergone two surgeries since doctors discovered the cancer two years ago.  While the tumor has shrunk, time will tell how this ends for this courageous little boy.  Meanwhile, he and his family have a memory for a lifetime.  To me, the most touching part was how the entire Cornhusker team rallied around this sick little boy (details from washingtonpost.com).

The church of our Lord is the most important institution on earth.  To be a part of it is to be in the place where all spiritual blessings flow (Eph. 1:3), to be in Christ (Gal. 3:27), and to be part of God’s household (1 Tim. 3:15).  Of the myriad of blessings, Christians are part of a family.  When one of our family members is sick, hurting, suffering, spiritually struggling, has fallen from Christ but returned to Him, or in any other way finds himself or herself in a battle bigger than themselves, God designed the church to rally around that one and support them.  Paul urged supporting the weak (Acts 20:35). The writer of Hebrews urges us to “strengthen the hands which hang down, and the feeble knees” (Heb. 12:12).  Long ago, the prophet said, “Encourage the exhausted, and strengthen the feeble” (Isa. 35:3).

Nothing is more moving to see than the church family rallying around a fellow-Christian in need of help.  I know I am not alone in feeling this way!  May we always feel comfortable enough to invite others into our lives to help us as we struggle to overcome and make heaven our home!