Tuesday, March 27, 2012

DutchBlitz and the Mania of Competition

LilBro and NutMeg introduced us to the game of DutchBlitz--a game that would make the most holy of people lose their religion and opt for words that may incite the masses (mostly to maniacal giggling over a personal victory).  The competition is fierce, and there's nothing like hearing someone scream "BLITZ!" (or Yahtzee for people like Blake who never can seem to remember what you're supposed to yell) when you know you've only played one card out of your stack of ten.

Our game has gained quite a cult following, and that following has opinions regarding some of the rules of the game.  "Double-fisting it" is not allowed.  (That rule requires any number of threats to insure compliance.  Recently, "I will cut you" made it's way into the conversation at the table after a particularly blatant incident of "double-fisting."  That could be my fault--the phrase, not the cheating...the very blatant cheating)  Playing any of your three is also not allowed--it's a top-card-only game.  (Though JaketheSnake insists that he should be allowed to play any of the three cards on the table given that they are, in fact, his cards.)  And if the rules are broken, you are irrevocably branded a Dirty Cheater.  (And that phrase will be uttered with as much malice as one can muster.)

For us, the game never really ends.  We play until our legs go numb or someone insists we quit for unimportant things like dinner or small group.  And even then, the competition will imbue every conversation--from dinner (Enjoying that chili dog?  Bet it would taste better if you would've blitzed.) to helpfulness (I'd like to help you carry all that stuff, but since you're so good at two-fisting it during the game, I figured you had it covered.).

There's nothing wrong with a little competition.  After all, it's just a game.

Until it's not.  And I fear, in a lot of ways, I continue to compare scores when there is no game.

The comparisons are silent now.  But when they happen, there is a wordless pressure to "guard" my heart (Prov. 4:23).  I think God keeps impressing that scripture on me, because there is a much bigger risk of hopelessness now than there used to be.  (Odd how that happens when God's hand has clearly moved in life, eh?)  Before, I could play the comparison game and lose several times over; however, there were some tiny wins I found pretty comforting.  I was never the best Bible study facilitator, but I found an ability in myself in those chairs with those women.  I'm no American Idol (nor am I The Voice), but something about my harmonies clicked with the girls at the other microphones.  So when something reminded me of all of the voids, there were a few positives to balance the scale.

But now, there are no comparisons, because I have nothing to compare.  All of the things that balanced the scale for me are in the past, and while I'm in a much better place than I've been in a long time, I still find myself reaching for a few of those cards to lay on the table.

Maybe that's the point.

The more sermons I hear about service to others, the more I see it lived in the lives of people who have openly accepted Favorite and I, the more I understand that God is drawing my heart--mostly to pour myself into the lives of other people.  (Wouldn't you know that God would draw my heart to the thing I dread the most in life.)  And one can't pour into the lives of others if she is constantly waving the flag of comparison.  There can't be competition in sacrifice, because there's no win.  There is (hear my Yoda) do or do not.

While I marinate on that ever-deepening demand, I may need a few more games of DutchBlitz to stave off my competitive nature.

Otherwise, I'll be a score-tallying fool.

1 comment:

Sheena said...

I'm scheduling some back of the bus singing for June! ;-)

And I have a love-hate relationship with that stupid game...and Jacob is a cheater!