The Brook Hill School

A weekly message from the Athletic Director

“ALL ORANGE…All The Time”


Do you ever get down in the dumps because life isn’t exciting enough?

Does doing the same thing day in and day out drag you down?

Do you tire of doing the same old thing, following the same old routine, with nothing different ever happening or changing?

Sometimes “normalcy” OR “the usual” can seem at times…depressing.


Last Tuesday night, our Boys Varsity Soccer Team played Grace in the class AAAA State Semi-Final Game (which we won by the way!).

It was one of the coldest nights of the year.  Several of us hunkered down around the concession stand at Herrington Stadium, trying to catch some of the heat blowing from inside where hot chocolate and coffee were sellouts due to the large, frozen crowd.

Fans could be seen in the bleachers with portable heaters, insulated coveralls, and layers of blankets upon blankets while braving the super cold weather.

The Agnew Family, Head Boys Basketball Coach Jacob, his wife Jessica, and their two young children; Maddox (4) and Bostyn (2), were using the friendly warm confines of Founders Suite in The Kyle Lake Athletic Center to have dinner and watch the game.  It was the perfect place to see the game while keeping the kids out of the cold.

Although the weather outside was frigid, Maddox and Bostyn have “warmed up” to me personally lately, mainly because I try to hand them a safety sucker in their favorite flavor-orange, every time we see each other (it’s an old trick but effective).

The rest of the week saw The Agnew’s living their normal life.  Jacob and Jessica were actually at the state championship soccer game in Waco Saturday while Maddox and Bostyn spent the night with Grandma and Grandpa.

Everything was going just fine with the Agnew’s…normal…routine…same ole-same ole, until Sunday afternoon.

Around 4:00 PM, my cell phone rang and it was Jacob Agnew.  He was in the ER at Trinity Mother Francis with Maddox.

Maddox had started experiencing seizures earlier in the day, and continued to do so for around 20 minutes until the EMS arrived

Jacob and Jessica had no idea what was happening.  When Laurie and I arrived in the ER Family Waiting Room, Jessica was leaning up against a wall…sobbing.

The doctors in the ER had just told Jacob and Jessica that Maddox had pneumonia and meningitis.

Jessica could barely speak.  She was barely audible.

“The doctors say it doesn’t look good” she uttered tearfully.

For this young family, their normal day to day life had just gone haywire.

As their Brook Hill Family rallied around them Sunday night in Tyler, Maddox was Air-Flighted via a hospital jet to Childrens Hospital in Dallas, where members of Jacob and Jessica’s family would meet them.

Maddox was a sick little boy.  His young life was hanging in the balance.  Only a few hours earlier, he was having lunch with his family before the four of them would all lay down for a “typical” Sunday afternoon nap.

“The usual” had suddenly disappeared, and was replaced with doubt, fear, and concern.

I don’t know that if we appreciate “the usual” until we lose it. I think we tend to take for granted that the people in our lives will just always be there, and that things won’t change.  That the places we are so used to going for refuge like our homes, our church, our school, will always be there for us. With this attitude breeds the contempt of no longer being satisfied with all things normal.  We sometimes become dissatisfied and tend to complain, completely missing the Goodness of God in that he provides us safety, convenience, and stability.  Many times, we are so busy looking to find the new and different, the most exciting, or the latest and greatest, that we forget how good God is to us on a daily basis.

Psalm 46:10 tells us to “Be still and know God”.  In other words…slow down and notice the daily blessings God gives us.

Safety, consistency, predictability.   You know…normalcy!

For the past four days, many prayers have been offered up for Maddox and the Agnew family.  We believe that God is “The Great Physician” (John 5:1-9).  Many of us have spent a lot of time the last four days at Children’s Hospital praying, hoping, and trying to reassure Jacob and Jessica.

At the time of this writing, we are very encouraged.  Maddox is awake and has started eating, even asking for Gatorade.    He is recognizing people and things.  You know…normal!

Although Maddox is still very sick, the Agnew Family is hoping to bring him home in the not too distant future and recapture their own sense of normalcy.

This has been a lesson to me also.  I need to be more thankful for the usual…the normal…the routine…the mundane…because I have seen what happens to people when they lose it!  I know things have to change and will change and I know from time to time we all need a change.

But I sure like things being the same…normal.

I know our students at Brook Hill enjoy the blessings of safety, a beautiful campus, the calm environment, and the encouragement they receive when they come onto this campus on a daily basis.  They have become accustomed to the welcoming faces of friends, teachers, coaches, and principals.  Our students know they have a refuge here, and they know that God’s hand is upon Brook Hill.

It’s something that we all should appreciate, and never take for granted.

And that’s another reason to be “ALL ORANGE…All The Time”!

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The Brook Hill School | 1051 N. Houston St. | Bullard, TX 75757 | (903) 894-5000 | 800.657.3167