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Saturday, January 16, 2010

The Right Choice

A friend told me a story about her teenage son a few days ago.  He is on the high school basketball team and the coach has asked the boys not to drink soft drinks during the season.  Her son has not had one at all - even during the Christmas break when there weren't any games or many practices.

The interesting this is that during the break my friend, her husband, and their son went out to eat at a nice restaurant about an hour away from here, and by mistake the waitress brought the teen a Dr. Pepper instead of the water he had ordered.  His mom thought he might go ahead and drink it because it was there and she was figuring they had been charged for the drink anyway; however, the teenager scooted the drink over to the side of the table and asked the waitress for a water.

Ironically, while they were eating, the teen's basketball coach and his wife came into the restaurant to celebrate their first anniversary. Of course the coach noticed the drink sitting over by the teen, so they explained the mixup to the coach.  My friend was so glad that her son had stuck to his decision to keep the rule, even during Christmas break!

This story has several different life applications to it.  Let's look at some of them:

Observation:
From the teen's perspective, he could have made the decision to drink one Dr. Pepper during the break.  He could have thought that no one would know and that it wouldn't hurt anything to just have one soft drink.
Lesson to learn:
Even if no one had seen him drink the drink, God would have known.  He knows everything.  And, because the coach made a rule, the teen should have followed it as he did - even during Christmas break.

Observation:
The coach believed that because the Dr. Pepper was to the side of the teen, it was his.  It really would have appeared to be the case. 
Lesson to learn:
Sometimes things are not how they appear to be.  We may get all upset about something, only to find out later that we saw or interpreted something in the wrong way.  We shouldn't assume the worst in a person or in a situation, but be sure to make sure we have all of the facts about the situation.

Observation:
Sometimes people can get the wrong impression of us.  Even though we may not always think so, our example really does matter.  In virtually everyone of our lives, somebody is watching us and learning from us.  We may not realize it and we may not really like it, but it happens all of the time.
Lesson to learn:
Only God is our judge, but our influence on others and the example we show others matters.  Suppose that some other basketball player and his family from this teen's team had been at the same restaurant, but not talked to my friend and her family.  Maybe they happened to be leaving on the other side of the room right when the waitress sat the drink down?  The other boy and his family would have assumed that this teen was drinking the Dr. Pepper, even though in the end he didn't.  They would have only seen it being sat down by him.  So, this other teen might have thought it was okay to have a soft drink during the break, too, and then decide to get one on the way home...then maybe the next day and the next and so on.  Would my friend's son have been wrong?  Of course not, but it does show how what we do (or appear to do) can influence others and what they may do or not do.

My friend wondered if the coach would really think about the fact that her son didn't drink the Dr. Pepper, but the other day when her son asked his coach about something, he said, "You could go up in the stands and drink a Dr. Pepper," kind of as a joke.  So, see? He really did notice and he was proud of the teen for obeying his rule.  People really do notice when we choose to do the right thing.

This story reminds me of one of my favorite mottos that I've mentioned before:  "Do the right thing 'cause it's the right thing to do".  It also goes with this motto, as well:  "Do the right thing even when no one is watching."  Of course, there is always someone watching and that's God.  He knows everything about us and everything we do.  He's not in Heaven hoping we'll mess up, though.  No.  He's in Heaven wanting us to choose to do the right thing as we serve Him and live as His children.

So whether you eat or drink or whatever you do, do it all for the glory of God.
1 Corinthians 10:31

3 comments:

Wa Wa Waughs said...

what a great kid...

Michelle said...

Great post! Thanks for sharing! I found your blog through Robin's.

Have a blessed day!

Lori said...

Robin - Yes, he is!

Michelle - Thanks for stopping by :) Lori

 
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