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Have you ever played Bible
Trivia? I've played it twice--the first and the last time. My father and
I, both pastors, were on a team against my sister and my mother. Our team
took a real drumming. I'm not a good loser, I tell people it is because
I've not had much practice at it, nevertheless, I hate to lose. After the
game, Dad taught me an important lesson about Bible Trivia. "You can't
win, even if you win," he said. "If you win, they will say it
is because you are a Pastor, if you lose they will really rub it in."
He was right, and I've never played it again.
Nothing brings about disappointment
and frustration more than unrealistic expectations. I thought my team should
win because my Dad is the world's greatest preacher and I had just graduated
from Seminary. In retrospect, I see that I entered the game with unrealistic
We experience some disappointments
because we are not realistic in our expectations. Do you remember the aspirations
you had for your children when you first brought them home from the hospital?
I remember holding my son in my arms and thinking, "He could be the
next President, or the next great evangelist." Are these expectations
Other disappointments with
our children come because they make bad choices. God gave Adam and Eve
a couple of boys, and what happened? One of them killed the other. Which
one was it? I can't remember--I'll call my Mother later and ask her. Now
you see why I lost at Bible Trivia. Oh yea, it was Cain, wasn't it?
Isn't it wonderful to know that God
protects our children even when they make bad choices? He protected Cain:
So the Lord said to him, "Therefore whoever kills Cain, vengeance
will be taken on him sevenfold." And the Lord appointed a sign for
Cain, lest anyone finding him should slay him. (Genesis 4:15) If you
have a wayward child, pray that God will put the "mark of Cain"
on them too. If you'd like me to join you in praying for your children,
email me, I'll gladly pray for them one day this week.
It is refreshing to remember that our
children will carry our training with them. Train
up a child in the way he should go, Even when he is old he will not depart
from it. (Proverbs 22:6)
My mother and sister were
both great Bible students and both paid close attention to details. It
was unrealistic to expect that we had an edge on them. I'm not a strong
detail person--I read the scripture and see principles, characteristics,
and trends and don't even notice some details that the writers of Bible
Trivia noticed. I guess that's why they call it "trivia." Now
if they ever write a game named "Biblical Principles" . . .well,