Throwing Away Trophies

trophiesMy wife and I are in the process of moving.

We were cleaning out the garage last week and came across a box of trophies.

I’ve had the trophies since I was a kid. I received them at golf tournaments I won and from playing basketball.

I’ve kept them for years, and the thought of throwing them away had never crossed my mind.

If one of your personality themes is not “achiever”–(see Strength Finders)–this probably seems odd to you. To me it had always seemed perfectly normal.

It had been fifteen years since we last moved and I had considered what to do with the trophies, but this time the decision was easy. We threw them away.

Achievement is not a bad thing. It can even be a good thing, but it should not be the main thing. If you are an achiever, you will probably have the support of family and friends and you most certainly will have the support of your culture, which venerates achievers. It can become easy to draw your self-worth from your achievements and elevate those achievements over the calling of God in your life.

I have been to a number of funerals. Death provides a great perspective on life. The best funerals I have been to have been those where people come forward to talk about how the person had led them to the Lord or had been a blessing in their life. The most depressing funerals are those where  the eulogies focus on what the person had achieved in his or her life. Funerals make very clear the virtue of a life that bestows blessings over one that amasses trophies.

I say all that to say, that coming across that box of trophies last week was a reminder to me that going forward I want to focus more on being a blessing than being a success. GS

Leave a Reply