Updated: Jul 13
The Dallas Cowboys have been in quite a funk this season, but to a loyal fan like Matthew Nard, that will never change his allegiance to the team. Despite their recent low, Matthew has made a point to watch every game and support his favorite team.
Little did he know, however, that things were about to change for the Dallas Cowboys… and he was about to be front and center to witness it all!
A LITTLE ABOUT MATTHEW We met Matthew over four years ago on the streets of South Dallas. He was without a home and without the support of friends and family, and yet was open to be our friend. He is genuine, loves the Lord, and is a huge fan of the Dallas Cowboys.
When he moved into one of Bonton Farms’ pallet homes back in August, he still made a point to watch a Dallas Cowboys game on TV. He later was blessed with a TV so that he would not miss a game.
Matthew had a difficult upbringing and when it came time for his birthday (which happens to be on Christmas), he was not celebrated. This time of year for him has rarely been one of joy.
However, memories of watching Dallas Cowboys’ Tony Dorsett as a kid and later “all of the games with Jimmy Johnson” (Matthew’s words) are a source of fun and hope for him. Watching a team persevere through all of the hits, bruises and setbacks to play a great game together brings hope.
MATTHEW’S SURPRISE Knowing all of this about Matthew and coming to love him like family, Stormy, our Community Advocate, wanted to take him to a live Dallas Cowboys game for his birthday! So, with the help of our community, we were able to do just that!
Tickets to the Cowboys vs. Rams game last weekend were purchased, along with a few other gifts… the only thing left was to surprise Matthew with them all!
Gift #1 With two beautifully wrapped presents in hand, Stormy met Matthew at Bonton Farms to give him his birthday/Christmas gifts! A large print Bible, one thing Matthew was wanting, was unwrapped.
Immediately he opened to Psalm 23 and read, “The Lord is my Shepherd; I lack nothing.” His favorite verse. A verse he’s held onto in many moments of darkness and hardship, and a verse he reads aloud in a moment of celebration and joy.
“The Lord is my Shepherd. I lack nothing.” The weight of that truth felt by those in the room, knowing what his next gift entailed.
Gift #2 “Oh no… heck no. No way!” Matthew said as he opened his second gift and held it to his chest. He found out he and Stormy were going to the Cowboys vs. Rams game together, but he didn’t know he’d get to sport the jersey of his favorite Cowboys’ quarterback Dak Prescott.
“You’ve got something to wear for Sunday, don’t you!” Stormy told him. Through laughter and pure joy, Matthew responded, “Oh my goodness, yes!”
THE COWBOYS GAME Sunday, December 15th, Matthew and Stormy drove to the AT&T Stadium in Arlington to see the Cowboys play. Despite the team being in a funk, like a true fan, Matthew predicted the Cowboys would win--23 to 17. And then they won by a lot more!
Not only did Matthew get to see his favorite team in person, as the game went on and touchdown after touchdown was being made, Matthew’s excitement couldn’t be contained. He was grinning from ear to ear, cheering for his team, pumping his fist in the air after each play. He was front and center watching his favorite team win.
“First game… how was your experience?” Stormy asked Matthew after the game. “Can’t beat it, can’t beat i
t! And plus I get to go to the game where they win?!” he said through a toothy smile and laughter. “This is already turning out to be the best Christmas I’ve had already.”
To see his full reaction, watch our video below...
THANK YOU TO THOSE WHO HELPED MAKE THIS POSSIBLE…
Thank you to Nancy Turner, Jennie Gilchrist, Chrissy Holcomb, David Drake, Annalisa Lim, Elizabeth Webster, Karol Bruton, Kay Miller, Sarah Tyson, and Lexington Hill Partners for helping make his birthday an unforgettable one!
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