Tuesday, February 28, 2012

"Anything You Can Do, I Can Do Better . . ."

1 Corinthians 1:31 (Jeremiah 9:24)
Therefore, as it is written: "Let the one who boasts boast in the Lord."

"Here it is, Mom."

My son, Daniel, hands me a list of the boys he wants to invite to his upcoming birthday party.

In perusing it, I note two new names added since last year and a familiar one that's strangely missing.

"Daniel, why isn't Joey's name on this list?"

Daniel scowls and folds his arms defiantly over his chest.

"We're not friends anymore."

"Not friends?  But, you've been friends with Joey since kindergarten!  What happened?"

"Remember the week I was trying out for the school play, Charlotte's Web?"

I nod.

"Well, that's when it all started.  Joey bragged all week long that he was going to get the part of Wilbur.  Kept boasting that he was the best singer in chorus.  That he could act better than any of us."

"So, when you landed the lead role . . ."

"Yep!  He hasn't spoken to me since.  He's such a jerk!"

"Now, Daniel, don't call him a bad name.  Maybe, Joey would like to speak to you, but is too embarrassed after all his sounding off.  Maybe, he's waiting for you to make the first move."

Daniel ponders this for several moments.

"So, Mom, you think I should invite Joey to my party anyway?"

"That's up to you, honey, but, it would be a nice gesture."

"But, what if he doesn't come?  What if he's not embarrassed, but just hates me?"

"There's only one way to find out."
When the day of the party arrives, so does Joey.  All smiles.  Joking.  Toting a large, gaily wrapped gift which he hands to Daniel.

"You'll love what's in here," Joey assures him.  "I've got something just like it, only better."
Are you boasting today in anything other than the Lord?

Will you join me in prayer?
While it's true, Father, that some of us can do things better than others, make us ever mindful that this does not make us better than someone else in Your eyes.  Let us not brag to others about our talents and worldly goods.  Let our only boast be in You.  Amen.

Psalms 45 or 47, 48
Genesis 37:12-24
1 Corinthians 1:20-31
Mark 1:14-28 


  1. I think sometimes people miss the mark letting others know that they are just perfect the way they are.

    I know with my own children teaching them that they are capable of rising above mediocrity, encouraging them to do better or excepting that they will excel in some areas and not so much in other area's... self acceptance is tough because it is those that suffer in the self-esteem area that go around boasting or at least that has been my experience.

    1. Great to see you here, Amy!
      Yes, I'm with you about those who boast excessively. They are usually trying to cover up for their insecurities or low estimate of themselves and their capabilities. We do need to encourage our children in their talents and God-given gifts, teaching them thankfulness for all of them.
      Blessings to you!

  2. I see this happening in my house too. As parents we try to teach them what is best but, they do learn a lot from their peers.

    1. Oh, yes, Janaki, our children learn so much, for better or for worse, from their peers. We can only guide them as best we know how.

  3. That must be a humbling experience for Joey. And yes, no matter how good one is at something, it is important to stay humble. Just like Jesus who, although the Son of God and a King, chose to become among the poor. :-)

    1. Yes, Irene, remaining humble, knowing every gift and talent we have is because God has graced us with them, is important to living our lives with perspective and being able to meet the needs of others.

  4. That Joey seems like some kid :) So important to remember where the glory must go to!

  5. Yes, Corinne, quite the guy! Thanks so much for stopping by today and for inviting me to post on your blog. :)

  6. I'm not sure if kids learn this attitude from their very own parents LOL but it could be a real drag at times. Taking it on a positive note, perhaps it's one way of reinforcing people to put their very best in everything keeping in mind, though, that I'm competing with myself rather than with somebody else.

    I pray with you. I put all my hopes in the Lord and I could only do what's best because of Christ. May I boast only of my weakness because Christ's strength is best seen in them.

  7. I believe this is an everyday occurrence in most kid's lives these days. I hear it all the time and it saddens me. Why do they feel the need to always be better than the next one? Have we places so much emphasis on success that one is willing to step on another to get ahead, not concerning themselves with the effects their words have? When it involves a child, I look to the parents. Where is the guidance? God gave parents children, but with a great responsibility.

    1. Yes, when I see this type of behavior in kids, I, too, look at the parents. I think in all the rush to make sure children's self-esteem doesn't suffer, the lessons of humility and thankfulness for one's gifts are forgotten. The only thing worse than one-up-manship in children is when we see it in adults.
      Thanks for visiting!


Happy Birthday, Mom!

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