September 29, 2011

The Inadvertent Whistle

It's happened to almost every official that has worked a game, at some point, someone on the game they were working blew the play dead a little prematurely. It is a horrible feeling and the information that you have to report to one of the coaches is never good for them. It's another situation where you took something away from a student and you got in the way. No official means to do it and no official wants to ever see it happen. Yet, it does and it did recently in a game I was working.

The inadvertent whistle is just like that promise you made to that kid that you had absolutely no ground to stand on when you made it and now you have to retract your promise (indian giver). The reality is that I have blown a few inadvertent whistles in my day. Fortunately, none of them were on the football field. Or maybe that is an unfortunate happening. The game made me recognize this:
If we are deliberate in trying to meet students' desires, we have a better chance of accurately and assuredly committing to a student.

In officiating, we are taught to make sure that we see the ball in someone's hands and they are down. Furthermore, we are supposed to "play" with the whistle out of our mouth. These things help to make sure that we can officiate with accuracy and confidence that we have made the right call. The same must be true about what we commit to students.

Sure, there are going to be situations that raise the "urgency alarm" in a students' life. Yet, if we commit to doing something for or with them, without stopping to consider all of the variables that may enter a decision like this, we set ourselves, and that relationship, up for failure.
"Let what you say be simply 'Yes' or 'No'; anything more than this comes from evil."
This verse is much easier to accomplish when we take the time to find wisdom and exercise that wisdom with courage. Let's get rid of the inadvertent whistles and build relationships.

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