Being on Fire

Have you heard the story of Jason McElwain?

He was the autistic manager of a high school basketball team in New York. For four years, he had wiped up sweat, shagged balls, and sparked enthusiasm for his team. He loved basketball, every minute of it, even if he would never actually get to play.

Then it happened. Last game of his senior year. The coach said, “I wanted him to experience what it felt like to actually suit up and run out onto the court.” Jason exchanged the familiar manager warm-ups for a real uniform and sprinted out with the rest of the team.

The fans went wild.

Dozens of high schoolers, clad in yellow and holding “Jason” signs, rocked the student section.

Then the miracle. Toward the end of the game, the coach inexplicably put him in. He later said, “I never had any intention of playing him.”

The stadium erupted. A few seconds later, teammates fed Jason the ball for a baseline three-pointer. It missed by eight feet. A few seconds later Jason tried again. Again, he missed.

The coach said, “I was praying, Dear God, please just let him get a basket.”

Less than a minute later Jason’s teammates fed him just off the top of the key.

This time the three pointer drew nothing but net.

The gymnasium lifted several inches off the foundation.

Next trip down, Jason was open on the other side. Another three pointer, A few seconds later, another three pointer. Then another. Then another.

Jason McElwain the autistic manager was on fire.

The interviewer said, “You were on fire.”

Jason replied, “I was on fire.”

He was on fire! Jason made six consecutive three pointers, tying a school record. With each successive basket, the stadium got even crazier. When Jason hit his final three at the buzzer the crowd poured down onto the court and carried Jason off on their shoulders. It was true magic.

Jason reminds us that there is no telling what you can do if you work hard, stay disciplined and make the most of your opportunities.

Paul said it this way in Ephesians 5:15-16

So be careful how you live. Don’t live like fools, but like those who are wise. Make the most of every opportunity in these evil days.

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