I hit the Netball courts for the first time this season, this weekend. Two rounds had already gone by hindered by the rain for most, and more than hindered by Covid for me.
I felt a bit ‘out of it’, umpiring for the first time in a while. I did some umpiring in the first half of last year’s season, before the second half of the season was completely decimated by lockdown.
Are you getting the idea that I felt a little rusty? More than rusty, more like. I bumped into a former colleague on a nearby court before the match. I said, “I remember there’s a court and there’s a ball. After that I feel like I know nothing.”
There are times when step forward confidently. Then there are times when you don’t. I knew once I got out there it’d come back, but it didn’t feel like it.
Of course, it did come back. Still, I was pretty average. The pelting rain in the first quarter didn’t help either, combined with my eyes watering from my contact lenses. Still they played on and I kept blowing the whistle (…and giving really unclear calls…).
We made it into the second quarter and then the rain absolutely ripped down, again. Finally: game abandoned; before any 11 year olds fall over and do some real damage.
In a weird way, the rain was a blessing from God, I think. It gave me a chance to get back into the swing of it, without throwing me in the deep end. And, get this, when the game gets abandoned midway, you still get paid the full (token) amount. That’s some grace in abundance.
Looking at the forecasts for this autumn in Sydney, there might be a few more moments of abundant grace on the umpiring court. Still, I was sopping wet when I went to do my planned grocery shop afterwards. By the time I got home, it was definitely time to cook some chicken soup.
I’ve been thinking about the concept of confidence lately. Some people don’t feel confident about something, and yet they’re quite capable. Others are confident, when perhaps, (ahem) they shouldn’t be anywhere near as much.
As a Christian how do we approach the concept of confidence? How do we distinguish it from arrogance?
Christians are told to have humility. Where does the fine line fall? Just because someone is a confident speaker, doesn’t necessarily mean they will be good at explaining The Bible, or be a great leader, or even, actually be a believer.
A lot of people can get a lot of places in life (where perhaps they should be), just because they presented themselves with confidence. The same can go for the Church.
It’s always good to remember where our confidence should be displayed: “Some trust in chariots and some in horses, but we trust in the name of the LORD our God.“
Just because someone can ‘blow a whistle and make a call’ doesn’t mean it’s a good one (and that my soul knows very well).
Yours in going back for a second bowl of chicken soup,