My Singapore apartment looks out over a school football field. On any day, one can hear the sounds of kids playing as it echoes up and through the tall buildings. It is an inviting sound that encourages one to stop what s/he is doing and simply watch. From my vantage point, one sees the flow of the games more than the players. While feeling the excitement through the shouts and arm waving, one also sees the subtle moves that one player takes to have an advantage.
There are three observations that keep recurring. Kids today play a far more technical game then we did at the same age. Better coaching and more awareness make a big difference! The formations, balanced attacking, collapsing defenses, talk of individuals and teams willing to work together in order to improve the chances of winning. They know the value of principles and community.
Individuals that are looking for an edge are in many communities. While not present in every game, it is easy to spot the individuals throwing an elbow or two. It seems that someone always knows a better way to get ahead.
How others respond to the game is always changing. A few deteriorate into a disaster. Most muddle on and a few seem to curb the rouge while improving the quality of the game. It is the last approach that always holds my attention. In the best game, no matter how aggressive one gets, the response remains the same. Metaphorically, they are acting as characters from an old story. “When they call us names, we say, ‘God bless you.’ When they spread rumors about us, we put in a good word for them. We’re treated like garbage, potato peelings from the culture’s kitchen. And it’s not getting any better.” (1 Corinthians 4.13)
Today’s game is just beginning. I have no idea how others will play. I hear the call from the field to raise the quality of the game at hand. I know it will not be easy. I also know it is a challenge worthy of gods.