Tuesday, November 2, 2010

"When You Gain Self-Respect, No One Can Take That"

An excerpt from Y’s family prayer last night:
“...We are thankful we could all watch the football game tonight...”
Yes- we all watched. Even Y – although he did get 5 quick downs at the end, once again our team with a commanding lead.
So he seems to be handling this “trial” with humor.
He is taking a psychology class this semester. The teacher asked for a volunteer with strong self esteem. No one volunteered. A classmate volunteered Y and he concurred that he would cooperate. The teacher called him a “feeble minded meathead”.
Y responded “Right back at ya!!!” The teacher was taken off guard and had a difficult time proving his point. He was trying to communicate that if we hear enough negativity about ourselves we begin to believe it.
This forced a discussion. I asked Y. Do you let negative things people say about you “in”?
He said “No!”
“Why not?” I followed
“Just don’t.” he quipped.
I wasn’t that strong as a teenager- not even close. I look at how valuable a tool that is when you are in a tough situation as he is now.
We reflected back to a talk he gave in church when he was thirteen. I remember he struggled to write it. The subject was “I am a Son of God.” I thought it should be easy for him. It wasn’t. After lots of praying for help, I think he gained a greater understanding and belief that he is a son of God. I’ve enclosed an excerpt from his talk:
“At 6 foot 6, from North Carolina, Michael Jordan is in my opinion; actually I call it a fact, the best basketball player on the face of the earth. I can learn a lot about basketball from him, but, I also learned a few things from reading his book, For the Love of the Game. He says, “I think my father saw some things in me that I couldn’t see in myself.” When I read that, I thought of my Father in Heaven and I realized that I need to learn more about who I am as a son of God, and what my purpose in life is. Michael Jordan also said “I had self- respect, and nothing any one ever could do to me, or say about me, could change that.” That is also true in this earth life. Sometimes people don’t treat me with respect. But I need to learn as Michael Jordan did that when you gain self -respect no one can take that.”
I can see Y’s progress over the past several years. I still think both his earthly and Heavenly parents see more in him than he has yet seen in himself. Its okay- still room for growth. But perhaps what allows him to go forth in good humor and faith is his sound self-respect.
We talked last night about his new love for the game of football. He expressed a desire to play in college.
“What about basketball?” I asked.
“Uh- I wanna play both!”
I hope and pray he does see his potential – that these are not just empty desires. And, that he remembers and relies on what he has faith in, because, with the Lord on your side- Anything is possible. . .

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