When The Game Stands Tall (movie review)

When The Game Stands TallI had the privilege of seeing an advanced showing of When The Game Stands Tall which opens in theaters next weekend (August 22). When this movie was over, I was the one standing tall because it is such an inspirational story.

The movie opens as the De La Salle High School football team is in the midst of a 151 game winning streak. Think about that: in 12 years this high school football team hadn’t lost! How did they do it? Through the careful coaching of Bob Ladouceur and Terry Eidson, and through the dedication of players that bought into their principles.

But the team lost track of who they were and how they had achieved such success. The unthinkable happens: De La Salle loses a game!

How the coaches and players respond to this loss is the real heart of the story, and I’m so glad that it’s being told on the big screen. This movie is completely family-friendly, with no questionable content at all.

Here’s the deal: If you want Hollywood to keep making movies like this, you MUST make plans to see it on opening weekend (August 22-24). The movie executives base their decisions on box office sales that first weekend, so it will largely determine whether they will make more pro-family movies like this one.

Here is a behind the scenes look at the making of When The Game Stands Tall that I think captures the essence of the heart of this story—

Please go see this movie next weekend!

12 Quotes From “12 Huge Mistakes Parents Can Avoid”

12 Huge MistakesI highlighted a lot in Tim Elmore’s newest book 12 Huge Mistakes Parents Can Avoid … a lot! This is book that every parent (or grandparent) should read because it’s never too late to invest the best in our (grand)children. You can read my full book review of this must-read book by clicking here. Below are just a few of the quotes I highlighted in this book.

“I believe we have under-challenged kids with meaningful work to accomplish. We have overwhelmed them with tests, recitals, and practices, and kids report being stressed-out by these activities. But they are essentially virtual activities. Adults often don’t give significant work to students—work that is relevant to life and could actually improve the world if the kids rose to the challenge. We just don’t have many expectations of our kids today.” 

“Every parent and teacher wants to see their kids succeed in school, in sports, and in life, but making it impossible to fail isn’t the answer. Removing failure, in fact, is a terrific way to stunt maturity. … As parents, we’ve given them lots of possessions but not much perspective. As educators, we’ve given them plenty of schools but not plenty of skills. As coaches, we’ve taught them how to win games but not how to win in life. As youth workers, we provide lots of explanations but not enough experiences. As employers, we’ve mentored them in profit and loss but haven’t shown them how to profit from loss.”

“Truth be told, when kids have heard they are excellent without working hard or truly adding value to a team, the praise rings hollow to them. Our affirmation must match their performance.”  

“When people—especially young people—know they are free to try something and fail, their performance usually improves. It brings out the best in them. But if they are preoccupied with trying not to fail, they become paralyzed:

  • Failure can create resilience.
  • Failure can force us to evaluate.
  • Failure can motivate us to better performance.
  • Failure prompts creativity and discovery.
  • Failure can develop maturity.”

“Our constant caving begins to foster a constant craving in them. They want clarity. With boundaries unclear, they need more direct attention from Mom or Dad. Unwittingly, we actually breed insecurity and instability in our kids. This may sound strange, but consistency may be your best friend as a parent because it aids in your authority and in your child’s development.” 

“Removing the consequences takes one of two roads. We either excuse their behavior and remove negative outcomes, or we actually step in and pay the consequence for them. When we do this, we frequently relieve the stress. We bring immediate peace to the situation, so we get addicted to this pattern. Unfortunately, we don’t see the long-term problems we are causing. Removing the consequences from our children’s lives brings short-term tranquility but long-term trouble.”

“‘You can do anything you want.’ I recognize why we say this, but as our kids grow older, we must help them to see what we really meant. … We really meant, if they set their mind to do something, they’ll be amazed at what they can pull off. The catch is, it needs to be something with in their gift area. They cannot simply make up a dream or copy a friend’s dream and call it theirs. Dreams should be attached to strengths.” 

“We have created a world of conveniences, filled with smart phones, microwaves, Internet shopping, and online banking. The subtle message is that struggles are to be avoided. We want as much convenience as possible. In fact, we feel entitled to it. But we failed to see that when we remove the struggles from our children’s lives, we begin to render them helpless. They don’t have the opportunity to develop the life skills they’ll need later on. Further, when we step in to control their levels of struggle, they don’t learn how to be in control or under control themselves. In fact, all they learn is how to be controlled.”

“Ironically, the things young people want to avoid are necessary for them to mature authentically. Slow, hard, boring, risky, laborious… these are the very challenges that prepare me to become a good man, a good husband, a good father, a good employee, a good employer. Many life skills that once naturally developed in us now atrophy in today’s culture. So we must be far more intentional about leading our kids into opportunities to build these skills.” 

“When we affirm looks or clothing—external matters instead of internal virtues—kids values become skewed. Remember, what gets rewarded gets repeated. Without realizing it, we are reinforcing cosmetic features—usually features that are not in their control. … We should be doing just the opposite. We must affirm effort and behavior, which are in their control, instead of characteristics that are out of their control. If we do this, we begin to foster a growth mindset instead of a fixed mindset.”

“We mistake hurtful with harmful. Many times, hurting helps us. In fact, removing the hurt may be harmful. … When we hurt, we can learn important truths about ourselves and about others, truth that will be beneficial later in our lives. … We confuse disturbance with damage. We hate being disturbed. Our days are so full, we often hope and pray we won’t face any unexpected disturbances as we pursue our goals. The fact is, however, that on our way to those goals, we fall into unhealthy ruts. Interruptions force us out of those ruts. Interruptions are not damaging at all. They are the very items that save us from our tunnel vision. We need to be disturbed from time to time. Interruptions are wake-up calls that rouse us from our apathy or complacency.” 

“I know you think kids are tired of you talking about the good old days. But I’ve found most kids love hearing stories of how we adults struggled to learn the same life skills when we were young. It’s all part of growing up.”

12 Huge Mistakes Parents Can Avoid (book review)

12 Huge MistakesI read a lot of books, but very few of them get a “must read” designation from me. For parents and teachers, 12 Huge Mistakes Parents Can Avoid by Dr. Tim Elmore fully earns my must-read label.

The future of our schools, our businesses, our communities and our country is being determined right now in our homes and in our schools. The way we raise our kids now will have far-reaching implications for all of us. Dr. Elmore has such a great way of speaking to the leadership issues of our young people, that I cannot urge you strongly enough to read this book.

Real quickly, the 12 huge mistakes that parents and teachers need to avoid are:

  • We Won’t Let Them Fail
  • We Project Our Lives On Them
  • We Prioritize Being Happy
  • We Are Inconsistent
  • We Remove The Consequences
  • We Lie About Their Potential And Don’t Explore Their True Potential
  • We Won’t Let Them Struggle Or Fight
  • We Give Them What They Should Earn
  • We Praise The Wrong Things
  • We Value Removing All Pain
  • We Do It For Them
  • We Prepare The Path For The Child Instead Of The Child For The Path

The book opens with a simple parenting quiz that will allow assess where you are in these 12 areas. Then you can turn to the chapter on which you scored the highest in the “overfunctioning parent” scale, and deal with that issue first. Each chapter is jam-packed with practical tips to correct that particular mistake.

Dr. Elmore describes the purpose behind his book this way—“Here’s the bottom line. I believe we need to face some new issues as parents. We must define what kids need from us to mature in a healthy way. We must figure out what hinders their growth and what equips them to be great adults. We must become both nurturers and trainers, knowing that we are not raising children, but future adults. I offer this book as a reference guide as you face your toughest challenges and attempt to get kids ready for life as they leave your home or school. Here’s to correcting our mistakes along the way—for their sake.”

Parents and teachers, go get this book!

5 Noteworthy Quotes In “Stand Strong”

Stand StrongNick Vujicic does an excellent job in his book Stand Strong in helping students, parents, and teachers learn how to overcome bullies. You can read my full review of Stand Strong by clicking here.

I have already shared some of Nick’s quotes from this book, and some quotes specifically relating to the emotional toll bullying can have on those being picked on. Nick also makes the point that there are some invaluable lessons to be learned by overcoming adversity in our lives. Here are some of the quotes that Nick shared in his excellent book.

“You don’t develop courage by being happy in your relationships every day. You develop it by surviving difficult times and challenging adversity.” —Epicurus

“All the adversity I’ve had in my life, all my troubles and obstacles, have strengthened me. … You may not realize it when it happens, but a kick in the teeth may be the best thing in the world for you.” —Walt Disney

“Comfort and prosperity have never enriched the world as much as adversity has.” —Billy Graham

“Most of the verses written about praise in God’s Word were voiced by people who were faced with crushing heartaches, injustice, treachery, slander, and scores of other difficult situations.” —Joni Eareckson Tada

“Friendships provide a context in which children develop, but of course so do negative peer relations. … We should expect that both types of relationships, as different as they are, present opportunities for growth.” — psychologist Maurissa Abecassis

Links & Quotes

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Some good reading & watching from today…

“Avoid relations with unbelievers in which your relation endorses the unbelief or consequent sins, and avoid the kinds of relationships that involve the interweaving of deep personal values (like marriage). On the other side, don’t avoid relationships where you can have clear testimony to the truth and are allowed to stand on Christian principles, even if you are sometimes criticized for getting too close.” —John Piper

Nick Roen has a very thoughtful post that every Christian should read: Orienting On Homosexual Orientation.

One of the all-time favorite Detroit Tigers was Ty Cobb. This is a great post about Ty Cobb versus Babe Ruth in home runs.

Yes! 4 Ways To Use Failure Well.

Jen Wilkin has a good post for parents: Help Your Kids Say ‘No’ To Porn.

This is a great way of looking at this: True Patriotism Is Axing Taxes To Keep Companies In The USA.

[VIDEO] “Where have we entered when the Bill Of Rights is a partisan matter?” Watch Sen. Ted Cruz defend our First Amendment rights.

Links & Quotes

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Some great reading and watching from today…

[VIDEO] Thanks to my friend Rich for telling me about the friendliest restaurant in America.

“No state is so blessed as that wherein one is free from sin, is filled with innocence, and is fully supplied with the grace of God.” —Ambrose

[VIDEO] John Maxwell has a good reminder about the power of personal discipline.

There are few who can express the love of God as Charles Spurgeon in The Glorious Love Of The Father.

Tim Elmore shares some counter-intuitive thinking for preparing our kids for success.

“If you want to hear from Heaven you must seek it on your knees.” —D.L. Moody

“Don’t be forced into this false dichotomy. Truth and love are not at odds. Rather, for the sake of love, cherish the truth. Let this love for truth and truth for love govern the use of language….” —John Piper

“Who will grant me to find peace in You? Who will grant me this grace, that You would come into my heart and inebriate it, enabling me to forget the evils that beset me and embrace You my only good?” —Augustine 

Don’t buy into it when Islam is called a religion of peace: ISIS terrorists targeting Christians in Iraq.

Links & Quotes

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Some good reading from today…

Hobby Lobby: Good News, Bad News & A Warning.

In related news: Liberals’ Top 3 Absurd Hobby Lobby Claims.

And a scary news item: Obama White House seeking ways to circumvent the Hobby Lobby SCOTUS ruling.

Perhaps even scarier is this [VIDEO]: President Obama unapologetic about trying to bypass Congress.

Hamas (which is supported by the Obama State Department) murdered three Israeli teenagers.

All of this re-reminds me: The world needs Jesus. John Piper says, “Your life is too small if it is not connected to this great challenge. Not all Christians are missionaries. But all care about the mission. All are connected. And want to be connected. No Christian should go for months and never think about this greatest of all enterprises.” Read more in his post The Greatest Challenge In The World.

“Success is not final; failure is not final: it is the courage to continue that counts.” —Winston Churchill 

“No scripture is exhausted by a single explanation. The flowers of God’s garden bloom, not only double, but seven-fold: they are continually pouring forth fresh fragrance.” —Charles Spurgeon

“Human knowledge must be understood in order to be loved; but Divine knowledge must be loved to be understood.” —Blaise Pascal

 

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