One of the biggest fallacies that we all fall into at times is the belief that the way “we” do things is the way everyone else does them and, of course, this is never actually true, is it? I was reminded of this fact once again recently when Rickey and I attended a high school football game in south Texas.
The team that caused us to attend the game was the Industrial Cobras, a 2-A consolidated school and team made up of young people from tiny communities whose fans obviously brought with them the patriotism and love of God that often can still be found in these small Texas communities.
The night was the typical south Texas in October kind of night, the crowd very casual in dress and demeaner with people simply kicked back to enjoy some Friday Night Lights and all that comes with them. All in all, everything progressed pretty much as it does at any Texas football game, both teams running through their respective banners behind their cheerleaders while the notes of school songs wafted across the south Texas plains.
Like the others, we stood for a moment of silence, but we were caught totally unaware when a fan in the stands began to pray loudly enough for all to hear. As the prayer closed, we were surprised once again as the audience spoke up loudly and clearly in a unified recitation of the Lord’s Prayer, something clearly the norm for these football fans.
I must admit that by the time we were invited to sing the National Anthem as we faced not one but four American flags, I was completely afraid to move from where I stood on the field to a spot to where I could capture the faces of the Industrial Cobras as they stood at attention, choosing instead to photograph their backs, nervously expecting Pallie Palmer, Jewel Werner, or Nobia Dunn (my old high school teachers) to swoop down and snatch my camera from me at any time for being disrespectful to the flag by photographing during the anthem!
And then…it was Friday night football here in Texas!
Here at United we salute both the Cobras and their fans. We had a great time and are a little in awe of a community who either doesn’t know or doesn’t care that praying and football parted ways in most places long ago. Our hats are off to fans and players alike for having the guts to stand firmly on their personal beliefs!