"Let your heart and your words be acceptable in God’s sight" by: Betsy Monico

   I witnessed a true competition last night in our home gym. 
   It brought out goosebumps, high-blood pressure medicine, and probably created a line at the concession stand for more popcorn. 
   Our high school volleyball team won their final district match. It was a big win against an old rivalry.  
   This particular team has not been in our district for many years; therefore, the race for the playoffs subsided and the dust somewhat settled. 
   The fierce events that took place when I was younger all calmed, died off, as well. They got totally out of hand and needed to die! Our last “homecoming bonfire” ended back in the day over this war.
The “friendly” 10-mile distance often brought us all closer and still does for many reasons; however, the pranks gradually transformed into larger incidents and multiple misdemeanor crimes I have been told. 
   Thankfully, these took place after I graduated. If you could have been a fly on the wall, but in this case…it is probably better not to be a fly.
The funny thing about this year is that most of our kids were not even alive when it all began, ended, but they still get it. 
   The school spirit and student support all came back! How and why? I guess they learned it from our old stories and tales. 
   The many families in attendance last night were in rare form to say the least. 
   Both teams displayed a great amount of talent and passion. Sharing the outcome of the volleyball game is not my goal here. 
   Predicting what might happen when we play them in football, although my son might argue, is not my intention either at all. 
   What I witnessed is worth noting though – the younger generation locally is playing, acting, and believing what the former generation of both sides raised them to accept as the truth. 
   Do not get me wrong and think my observations were negativist. 
   I loved the energy. I found myself emotional at times watching both sides of students support their peers and abandon their typical “high school” cool and controlled demeanors when cheering on their teams. 
   In case you have been living in a hole, teenagers these days are not very passionate. 
   They are often melancholy. We parents repeatedly check for a pulse to see if they are even breathing. 
   It did my heart good to see them care, but it showed me more too. They fought, cheered, and supported because we once believed in this “cause” and they picked up on it. 
   What else have they learned from us? What are they “picking” up daily from us? 
   That is truly the bigger question and convicting. 
   When my crew was younger and all still under my wing, we prayed on the way to school and recited my personal affirmation. 
   “I am loved. I am chosen. I am a Child of God. The Lord has plans for my life.” 
   My oldest recently added to her tattoo collection with those exact words. 
   I wanted to beat her, but took it as a compliment after I regained my composure. 
   After my crew started driving, I lost our morning time being trapped in the car. 
   Those times were full of chaos and confusion; however, my words stuck with them, whether I knew it or not. 
   I guess I told them stories about playing Teague, the bonfires, and the fierce competitions too. 
   Psalm 19:14 ties in with all of this. 
   “Let the words of my mouth and the meditations of my heart be acceptable in Your sight; O Lord, my rock and my Redeemer.”

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