My boys were given compound bows for Christmas by a family friend and have spent a few hours shooting at targets. They came in the other day and said they wanted to compete at a 4H archery competition. There was going to be a barbeque afterwards and it would be for one day, maybe two.

My immediate response was “Absolutely not!”  I proceeded to explain that you don’t just enter a competition for something to do without being prepared. There would be people in this competition that had worked at this for years. 

Now, if they want to spend the time working at it, then I’m all about it. But in a time where much of society has an entitlement attitude and too many folks want something for nothing… I want my kids to strive and work at whatever their passion is. I will support whatever they decide to do, as long as they are willing to work at it. It may sound like I’m a slave driver, but I believe it would be an injustice to my children to allow them to compete and fail because they didn’t do the work necessary.

I tend to get on my soapbox anytime someone wants something for nothing or expects to achieve something big with little or no effort. I don’t care what you do – just be the very best you can be. Competing is not fun to me. Being prepared and competing is what’s fun. Now if I get my butt kicked and I’m prepared, I don’t mind that. But if I haven’t done what it takes to be ready, and then get beat – that’s no fun.

I don’t want my kids to be people who just go enter for fun without expecting the best from themselves. I don’t want them to do anything half way. There’s no reward in that and little self-respect to be found. 

My son told me the other day that he wants to be a professional basketball player. I told him, “Don’t tell me, show me.” I will support my kids in whatever they choose to pursue, as long as they work at it and give it their personal best.

Lots of people want to be world champions, or be rich, but they don’t want to do what it takes to get there. I don’t care if children are neither, but I want them to know the gratification that comes with trying your very best.

Until next time, God Bless and I’ll see you down the line.

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