Jun 132013 5 Responses

Say It Out Loud (or the Reason I Quit College Athletics)

There is an old method for determining if your action is right or wrong—say it out loud.

It seems too simple to be effective, but it works.

Too often we are so close to our own lives that we cannot see when our actions our foolish. By saying out loud what we are doing, or what we plan to do, we can gain perspective. We can imagine what our words would sound like to our boss, spouse, child, or grandmother.

Say it out loud: 

  • “I can’t go a single day without a drink.”
  • “I’m in my mid-30’s, without a job, and am living with my parents.”
  • “I don’t have a valid prescription for the pills I’m taking.”
  • “I’m having an affair.”
  • “I don’t remember the last time I prayed.”

This method is the reason I quit playing golf in college (I realize some will charge me with bait and switch since my headline said “college athletics” and now I admit I was playing golf, but it’s a sport).

When I was in college we had a golf tournament which was played over Easter weekend. We came to a hole with a long wait and as I stood on the tee I was talking to a playing partner when I heard myself say, “I’m attending Oklahoma Baptist University majoring in Pastoral Ministry, hoping to one day pastor a church, and I’m playing golf on Easter Sunday.”

Just saying it out loud sounded wrong.

I don’t think it’s wrong to skip church on occasion. Once a year I take a Sunday off and play in a golf tournament.

But that wasn’t my first Sunday to miss church and to do so on Easter was ludicrous.

I might have never seen how crazy it was without simply saying it out loud.

Say the following out loud and see if they sound wrong:

  • As Americans we are paying for what we have by leaving a large debt to our children.
  • The Church League baseball organization is sponsoring tournaments which include games on Sunday mornings. (For more on this topic, see here.)
  • We demand (and pay for) undocumented children to attend elementary, junior high, and high school, but will not allow those students to pay in-state tuition for college.
  • The IRS is making decisions based on people’s political beliefs.
  • The average fan pays more money for season tickets to a college team than they give to their local church.

Say it out loud.

Common actions can take on a different light when we simply say what we are actually doing.

Consider something you are currently doing which might be wrong.

Say it out loud.

How did it sound?

5 Responses to Say It Out Loud (or the Reason I Quit College Athletics)
  1. Susan Haines Reply

    Great link on Church League baseball. We worship what is important to us. Where do we spend our time, talents, and money? A great test for our worship. I also hate late night sports during the school year. Students are exhausted and unprepared for class. Is learning how to perfect a pitch really going to prepare a kid for life? I remember the day when we had no games or practices on Wednesdays or Sundays.

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