My husband and I recently watched and enjoyed the Disney movie McFarland, USA with actor Kevin Costner. Yes—it’s one of those. You know, a feel-good movie where a coach comes in and saves the day by whipping a high school team into shape. They’re predictable and sometimes a little sappy. But there was something about this inspiring film that felt different.
McFarland, USA takes place in 1987 and is based on a true story. Liberties were taken with some facts, but the important key elements have remained the same. Jim White’s search for work led him to a position at a high school in California’s Central Valley with a predominately Hispanic population. His family slowly settled into the farming community where his students were expected to work the fields before and after school in order to help their families.
When Jim discovered that his students had exceptional fitness and stamina because of their rigorous schedule, he formed a track team, despite many challenges.
“Many of White's former runners credit him with inspiring them to achieve personal and career goals they would have otherwise deemed impossible. Over the years, cross-country provided a ticket out of poverty to runners with talent and focus who were willing endure grueling workouts in the 100-degree-plus summer heat—often after putting in a dozen hours working in the fields with their parents. Dozens of his runners have ended up going to college or into the armed forces, then returning to work as teachers at local schools or guards in one of the area’s many prisons” (People.com).
I think this is an incredible example of what how one man found purpose in helping others fulfill their dreams …
What about you? Sometimes it just takes a little interest—someone who believes in a person—to provide the courage needed to take the necessary steps toward a goal. Is there anyone you could help by offering encouragement, financial help, mentoring, or vital information?
Are you willing to reach out and make a difference?