Sunday, May 2, 2010

"You May Have Lost The Game, But You're A Winner To Me!"

Caleb is 8 and was asked to play on Auburn's "Thunder Team." Thunder is a travel team made up of the best of the best. Ok so I'm a proud Momma! This weekend we traveled to a tournament and he played in four games. We came out strong and won the first game. We played a really tough team in the second game and lost. We should have won the third game, but we played at 8:00 in the morning and the boys were still asleep. I heard one young man say he couldn't feel his legs yet. In the last game of the day they were on fire. Caleb had actually scored 2 goals in the first 5 minutes of the game. If you are a soccer lover then you will understand this incredible goal. His teammate made a corner kick, Caleb jumped in the air towards the waste high ball and popped it backwards with the sole of his shoe. SCORE!! The other goal was not quite so dramatic, but it was a goal. We were winning 2-0 and the boys were playing harder than I have ever seen them. We had about 15 minutes to go in the game and somehow the other team had managed to equal the score. Caleb was exhausted. He looked at me and with tears streaming down his face he said, "Mom, I just can't run anymore. I'm so tired." I told him to press on, to pray and ask the Lord for endurance and to give it his ALL. He replied with "Yes ma'am" and he finished strong. According to the score board and the books they lost, but in my book Caleb was a winner. As we stood on the sidelines trying to cheer up our exhausted, deflated team I was approached by three moms from the other team. "Who does #3 belong to?" (I was a little concerned because I had noticed a few trips and an elbow or two, but knowing I needed to claim him I said,) "He's mine." These moms began to brag on Caleb. Never had they seen a player run and play with such determination. They could not believe his endurance, his skill and his determination. But then they said something that I will never forget. "We were most impressed with his manners even in the midst of exhaustion and defeat." You see as the coach would yell instruction from across the field Caleb would respond with "Yes, Sir." As I was doing the unthinkable and coaching from the sidelines Caleb would say, "Yes, ma'am." These moms noticed his manners and they were impressed. In my book, Caleb is a winner. He played hard, he gave it his all, but more importantly he had an attitude that was honoring to the Lord Jesus. I would love to tell you that this was always the case, but Caleb has struggled with his attitude on the field this year so this was an even greater victory for him. I was so blessed to hear these moms recognize that Caleb was a wonderful soccer player, but I was even more blessed that they saw a respectful young man who had an attitude that honored Christ. So often we are concerned about the score and winning and losing that we forget about our attitude during the game. I'm not talking about soccer now. I am talking about me and you in everyday life. We are concerned about being right, about the end result, about how it will affect us that we forget to WIN in the process. We need to honor Christ with the fruits of our lips and the attitude of our hearts. Caleb put his all into that game today and the score says they lost, but I say Caleb was a winner today. One day those scores will be nowhere to be found, but Caleb's attitude and testimony will forever be etched into my heart, it honored his Savior who will never pass away and hopefully it will be remembered by those who witnessed this Christ honoring attitude. Remember that it's not the game but the attitude that makes you a winner.

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