There was disappointment at the beginning of the year when it became obvious that the soccer team didn’t have the skill set to be truly competitive. For Sydney, in her senior year, having been the high scorer for the previous four years, it’s been a bitter pill to swallow.
She adjusted to her young, inexperienced team by being the captain who cared. She helped teach them skills, encouraged them when they didn’t know what they were doing, and didn’t let her disappointment interrupt her time with her teammates. If she felt sad, she shared that with her mom. Nobody knew how this drained her.
They didn’t win a single game.
But when the time came to choose the All-District team and District Player of the Year, Sydney was chosen for both.
She was pleasantly surprised. Other coaches voted on who should be on the team and for the specific outstanding player, and Sydney was chosen because of her years of playing the game with this school.
She was selected based on her experience on the field and her character.
We live in a world obsessed with appearance and the latest “great” activity people have accomplished. We live for “likes” when what we long for is to be seen for who we are and recognized for our potential.
When the prophet Samuel was being led by God to anoint the next King of Israel, he was sent to Jesse’s home in Bethlehem; one of his sons would be the next king. When Samuel saw the oldest son, he had the physical features people typically believed a king should have. Samuel assumed this was the man.
“But the Lord said to Samuel, ‘Don’t judge by his appearance or height, for I have rejected him. The Lord doesn’t see things the way you see them. People judge by outward appearance, but the Lord looks at the heart.’” 1 Samuel 16:7
The son that Samuel eventually picked was David, the youngest, a teenager with no apparent kingly skill set. He was a shepherd, a kid. He, however, became the greatest king Israel had.
People haven’t changed. We still judge by appearances, believing that what we think we see is more accurate than who people really are. What our character reveals about us.
Our hearts reflect the truth of who we are. What we fill them with determines how we live our lives and treat others.
God alone can fill our hearts with the goodness of His truth. The world gives conflicted views of what’s right and acceptable. Character, which impacts our attitudes and actions, is shaped by the influences we invite into our lives. Discernment concerning what’s good and what’s not can often be limited. Especially in a world where how we seem to be is more significant than who we really are.
God gives us the power and wisdom to make decisions that are helpful for us.
Sydney might not have had a great year playing, but her character never lagged because of circumstances.
What are you allowing to impact your heart?
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