14 year old Charlie Line dashed onto the pitch to greet his heroes only to be tackled to the ground by an overzealous security guard. It could have soured his experience of having just been present to see his team the All Blacks win.
But then 6’4” centre Sonny Bill Williams gently picked him up, hugged him and gave him his gold medal to keep.
Which in my eyes made Williams twice the hero he already was.
For in so doing he gave us an up to date illustration of another hero, whose words and actions were recorded some 2000 years ago. When parents and young children were trying to get close to Him, overzealous disciples blocked their path. But Jesus overruled them and said,
‘Let the children come to me and do not hinder them for the Kingdom of God belongs to such as these. I tell you the truth, anyone who will not receive the kingdom of God like a little child will never enter it.’ (Luke 18 v 16-17)
Thank you Mr Williams for outstanding sportsmanship and generosity.
Thank you Lord Jesus for your gracious welcome and strong protection for fans of all ages!
God grant us all faith, courage and devotion like little children and young people, that we might indeed share in His Kingdom.