Click here to see Lesson 1: It’s just a game … does Christian Character matter?
Lesson 2: Sportsmanship and Losing
Proverbs 18:17-19New Word:
Any story sounds true until someone sets the record straight. Casting lots can end arguments and settle disputes between powerful opponents. It's harder to make amends with an offended friend than to capture a fortified city. Arguments separate friends like a gate locked with iron bars. (NLT)
sports•man•ship (spôrts m n-sh p , sp rts -) - n.It’s not whether you win or lose, but how you play the game…
1. The fact or practice of participating in sports or a sport.
2. Conduct and attitude considered as befitting participants in sports,
especially fair play, courtesy, striving spirit, and grace in losing.
- Have you ever heard anyone say that? It seems a little funny, doesn't it? I mean, why play, if not to win? Nobody wants to lose, do they? Yet in every game there are winners and losers, that’s why HOW you play the game is more important than who wins and loses.
- Remember that we learned last week that we are to honor Christ in everything that we do? We can honor Christ, even when we lose, by losing graciously. That means that you don’t call the other person names, or accuse them of cheating, just to make your loss seem better.
Respect for your Opponent – without them, there would be no game!
- If you accuse people of cheating (when they are playing fairly), then you will hurt their feelings.
- If you get angry when someone else wins, you steal his or her joy in the victory.
- Remember last week’s devotion “You are better off to obey God and suffer for doing right than to suffer for doing wrong”? It would be better to accept the loss and “suffer” knowing that you could have played better, than to wrongly accuse your friends! After all, listen again to today’s verse – it is very hard to make up with a friend that you have offended, even harder than capturing a heavily guarded city! It’s much better to lose graciously than to say or do something that would offend your friends. Just think, no one likes to play with a “sore loser” - one day you might have no one left to play with! Sure, you could win every game, but that wouldn't really be fun, would it?
Next Lesson: Sportsmanship & Winning