Saturday, January 31, 2009

the game of life

Riley recently filled her marble jar (where we put in marbles for good behavior), so she got to go to the store to pick out a toy for her reward. She was immediately drawn to the game "Life." I thought that this was a great choice. I was excited to get a game that we could play together as a family instead of a toy that would sit around the house and gather dust. Plus I remember loving that game as a kid.

Maybe I should have read the description of the game on the back...

"Do whatever it takes to retire in style with the most wealth at the end of the game."

That pretty much says it all, but I was still shocked at exactly what "Life" is all about. Here are some of my favorite things that you can accomplish in "Life:"

Get best seats at the big game. Pay $20,000
Buy home gym. Pay $30,000
Buy lakeside cabin. Pay $120,000
Buy sailboat. Pay $30,000
Have cosmetic surgery. Pay $100,000
Redecorate your home. Pay $80,000
Hire maid & butler service. Pay $65,000
Host entertainment awards party. Pay $35,000
Lawsuit! Sue another player for $100,000

"Look, we have $100,000 so we're really happy!"

Wow! Oh, but wait, there is one spot that says:

Donate to African orphans. Pay $40,000

I guess it's all good, then, because you did donate some money to African orphans. As ridiculous as this game seems it is sending a very clear message to my kids. Life is about making lots of money and spending it on yourself. The only problem is that this is not at all what life is about. Life, real life, is about giving ourselves away. And this includes money. Blake and I have no desire to store up our treasures on earth. Especially when too many people in our world are starving, dying, barely surviving. As a Christ follower, I am commanded to give my money away. Because it's not really mine anyway.

At the present time your plenty will supply what they need, so that in turn their plenty will supply what you need. Then there will be equality, as it is written: "He who gathered much did not have too much, and he who gathered little did not have too little."
2 Corinthians 8:14-15

So, maybe I should just let a game be a game. Or maybe, just maybe, I should use this game as an opportunity to share with my children that this is not Life. And that they will never see us living Life the way it is lived in this game. And that the rewards of giving our money away are much greater than retiring in a mansion with the most wealth. And that we are storing our treasures in Heaven.

1 comment:

Erica Parsons said...

Sarah your heart continues to amaze and impress me. Your commitment to God, to the needs of others and to parenting is unmatched. Thank you for inspiring me! (by the way, I remember playing LIFE with you at my Dad's cabin in the mountains as a kid, although I'm not sure cosmetic surgery was an option...)