Saturday, September 17, 2011

Pigskin Proverb

One thing you should know about me ... I don't love watching sports - not even when my own kids are playing. While I'm fully aware that's completely sacrilegious according to the parenting bible it is how I feel. That's right ... I'm no mother of the year.

I sign my kids up to play sports, I attend their games, I wash their jerseys ... I've even been caught wearing the occasional fundraising team mom t-shirt with my kids number on the back but I sheepishly admit ... I don't love it. At all.

All that to say my oldest son is playing football - for the first time - at the junior high. He's had two games. And apparently he's good. Really good. I say apparently because this is the first time I've ever watched an entire football game from beginning to end. I really have no idea what is going on. I mean I get the basics of it but don't ask me what position he plays or what a blitz is. I've no clue. But even an imbecile novice like me can figure out that what he is doing on that field is good. I mean he's always doing the hitting not getting hit. He remains on his feet while the other children kids pull turf out of their face masks or if he's on the ground he's the one who comes up with the ball.

Pretty good for a 5'11" 12 year old.
Really good for a hearing impaired kid who plays without his glasses.

After his last game, a tough loss, I anticipated his low morale on the car ride home. When I started with the obligatory run-of-the-mill-generic encouragement Ebay cut me off.
"Oh I'm OK Mom! I played really good!"
"Yes baby you did!"
"And plus I don't mind loosing."
"You don't mind loosing?"
"No, not at all! I'd rather play a hard team and loose than kill an easy team!"

I'm not kidding you. These were the words that came out of my son's mouth.
And since he can't even remember to brush his teeth everyday
I was stunned.

He continued, interrupting my shock.

"I mean, when you play against a hard opponent you really have to work hard. And that's the only way to get better, Mom. Is by working hard."

He is right, of course. So painfully correct.
How many of us avoid hard work?
How many of us complain when we hafta go above and beyond in our workplaces?
in our life?
in relationships?
Most of us do only as little as possible.
As very little as possible.

You'll never like hard work. But it's necessary to get better
to improve
to succeed.

So the next football game you see me, I may not be wearing school colors or cheering the loudest but know that my heart is bursting. For that rough and tumble, testosterone induced game of pigskin has taught my son one of life's greatest lessons. And it has reminded me to put a quash on my own complaining and roll up my sleeves the next time I find myself in a challenging situation. I may not be 'winning' but I'm getting better!

What if we all did the same?

NIV Proverbs 14:23 All hard work brings a profit, but mere talk leads only to poverty.

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