You really had to be there to experience it, my words certainly won’t do the night justice. Hopefully, I can get across just a bit of the wonder of the evening.
On February 9, 2018, the church my family and I attend – St. Pius X in Greensboro, NC – was one of more than 540 churches from across the world to host A Night to Shine. The Tim Tebow Foundation sponsors this amazing event which is a prom night experience for people with special needs. My family was privileged to volunteer for the event. My wife helped the women do their makeup, my oldest son served and mingled with caretakers and parents of the guests while my youngest son and I had the privilege of being a “buddy” to one of the guests attending the event.
From the second the guests were welcomed by our volunteers to the end of the night, keeping emotions in check was difficult to say the least. The absolute, unequivocal pure joy of the guests was indescribable. And it was contagious. Not in a flu-season contagious type of way, but in a “I wish I could bottle this feeling and pass it on” type of way.
The dancing from the guests was also contagious. Now, I’d like to think that I have some pretty slick dance moves coming from a mother that taught dancing for years. My wife may disagree with me. That said, you couldn’t help but get your groove on because the dance floor was hot! Dancing with the Stars could have filmed an entire season in just two hours that night. And every single one of the guests were Stars.
Tim Tebow and his foundation got it right when they named the event Night to Shine. Each of the guests, volunteers and churches had the chance to shine that night and shine they did. However, those weren’t the only things that were shining that night. Faith, hope and love were shining. In short, Christ was shining that night.
I met a lot of shining stars that evening, but there was one person in particular that touched my heart.
Together, Nathan and I ate, danced, smiled and laughed. He had a way of reminding me to see the joy in all things both big and small. I saw Christ in the faces of each guest that night. There is no other way to describe it but pure joy and love.
I not only saw Christ in the face of Nathan, I had the honor and privilege of experiencing it firsthand.
I started the night as Nathan’s “buddy”.
By the end of the night and now each day moving forward, I am blessed to be Nathan’s friend.