When did being a team player become so unfashionable? Taking a back-seat to the newest form of narcissism, called “entitlement.” The deadliest pollutant to the health of society. Rapidly spreading like an “out-of-control” forest-fire, hungry to devour our land of plenty. North America. Entitlement disregards the very values and integrity that our country was built on. “Our strength in our unity of purpose,” as declared by Franklin Roosevelt. This attitude that the world somehow owes us more keeps its followers blind and indifferent to the needs of the 795 million less entitled, who go to bed hungry every night. The attitude of entitlement runs parallel to that of narcissism. Both stand on shaky platforms of “selfies,” and “self-centeredness.” So, are we living in the “land of the free?” Or are we as parents raising our children to live in the lonely, black-hole of singularity? Undoubtedly this mindset must be nurtured within the walls of the family home.
God warns us that, “… everyone who exalts himself will be humbled, and he who humbles himself will be exalted. Luke 14:11 ESV. Entitlement has a very limited future. Our teenage son quickly learned that lesson while attending an “outbound” school run by lay-ministers. Every winter the boys went on snow-shoe runs that lasted for most of the day. The teams were divided equally, with both strong and weaker boys. The team leaders would tie a long scarf around his waist and the other end around the waist of his weakest member. This is called “scarfing.” There was never any animosity, just one goal in sight. To finish the race, knowing that each team was only as strong as its weakest player. Talk about character building! CEO’s of successful companies have a similar understanding. They realize that their company successes lie in the strength of the collective team, not the singular. To achieve their “strength in their unity of purpose,” they are grateful for all the individual gifts each employee brings to the team.
“The body is a unit, though it is made up of many parts; and though all its parts are many, they form one body. So it is with Christ. For we were all baptized by one Spirit into one body – whether Jews or Greeks, slave or free – and we were all given the one Spirit to drink. Now the body is not made up of one part but of many.” 1 Corinthians 12:12-14. With the unity of purpose. Serving God, not self, with a grateful heart.
Bottom line. We need each other and how much sweeter the taste of success is when it is shared and benefits others! Teach your children to be good team players -by Lois Macdonald