Golfers are sissies. Seriously. I say this as someone who loves to play golf (I use the term “play” lightly. I’m terrible. I can take 20 strokes to finish a hole. And that’s in miniature golf). Golfers buy all kinds of expensive equipment and then use it to hit the ball even further into the woods. They wear clothes that would embarrass Lady Gaga. But for me, the last straw was when I watched Tiger Woods play recently. He threw a temper tantrum because a photographer snapped a picture during his backswing. He hollered, threw his club to the ground, and acted like a big baby. All because of a single “click” while he was swinging.
Are you kidding me? Can you imagine an Ultimate Fighting Championship fighter shushing the crowd as he prepared to put a choke hold on his opponent? Or how about a Carolina Tarheel demanding silence at Cameron Indoor before taking free throw that would send the game into overtime? Ridiculous.
Making noise and yelling at the players is part of professional sports. It’s as American as fajitas . When we pay money for a ticket, we should be able to say whatever we want. It’s our first amendment right. Right?
Except at our kids’ sports games. I can’t believe the number of parents I’ve seen make complete fools of themselves in the name of competition. Parents who can’t run 10 feet without passing out are screaming at kids to hustle more. Adults who can’t spell ‘referee’ are heckling the ref about how stupid he is. Coaches who wasx eloquent about sportsmanship and setting a good example go out and do just the opposite. The irony.
These are kids. 99% of them will never play college sports. 99.99% of them will never play professional sports. Most of them are just out there trying to have a good time. That is until we adults ruin it for them by trying to live out our sports fantasies through them. I’ve yet to attend a youth sports event where I haven’t seen at least one kid look up in the stands, silently pleading with his or her parents to stop embarrassing them. Others are practically reduced to tears by the outright meanness of adults, many of whom will be all smiles at church on Sunday morning. What exactly do we think we’re teaching our kids when we act like this?
We’re teaching them that winning is everything, no matter what the cost. We’re teaching them to take out their anger on anyone who happens to be near them. We’re teaching them to treat others in a way that we’d hate to be treated ourselves.
We’re teaching them that we’re sissies.
We’ll never do this at New Story Church. Wonderful kid’s ministries will always be one of our top priorities. We’ll teach our kids about the awesomeness of God. We’ll encourage them, strengthen them, and prepare them for the tough world they face. We’ll remind them over and over again that their worth doesn’t depend on how pretty they are or how far they can throw a football. They, like all of us, are infinitely valuable because God created us in God’s image. And above all, we’ll learn how to be good examples for them, so when they look at us, they know what it means to be a followers of Jesus. And not sissies.