The kids have loved being in the kitchen for years. I’ve not loved having them in the kitchen but, as they get older, I am acquiescing more to their culinary collaboration.
So it’s no surprise when we stumbled on the Kids Baking Championship on the Food Network, the kids were hooked. We DVR the episodes and watch them over the weekend.
Last night, we saw episode six where the remaining six kids have ninety minutes to make a dessert from three different candies on the candy bar. With two minutes left on the clock, one girl started to cry because she couldn’t get the torch to work. Another little girl had finished her dessert and saw her competitor struggling. Unlike any adult competition, she ran over and asked if she could help her “competition.” The girl nodded gratefully and together they completed her desserts in just the nick of time.
She didn’t win, but I was grateful for her real life example for my kids, and me, of how willing we should be to help other succeed.
Then, we walked into Sunday School this morning and heard a story about Moses out of Exodus. One that doesn’t get told very much. But the story is a great illustration of the children’s “life app” for February: Cooperation. The Israelites were under attack by the Amalekites and the only way they would win is if Moses held his staff over his head. As you might imagine, holding a staff over your head all day can get pretty exhausting. So two buddies who had gone up on the mountain with him, “held his hands up—one on one side, one on the other—so that his hands remained steady till sunset,” and the Israelites won the war. (Exodus 17)
The tag line for our lesson was: We can work together to help someone else succeed.
When was the last time you or I, together with others or on our own, worked to help someone else succeed.
It reminded me of this ten year old on the cooking show. She had absolutely no reason to help the other girl except for pure goodwill. In fact, helping the other girl could (and did) reduce her chances of winning the competition. But someone had instilled deep in her a life value that you should help someone who is struggling if you can.
At what age do we lose the instinct to help others succeed?
It’s still there at 10, for some. But enough years in a modern American culture with a motto of “what’s in it for me?,” breeds that instinct right out.
I shared the cooking story with our kindergarten Sunday school friends this morning and asked them each to tell me the names of their friends at school. How can we find ways this week to help them? Look for chances to help them and others.
What if we would do the same?
What if we stopped seeing that mom or wife or colleague or volunteer as “competition,” and instead looked for ways to help her succeed?
What if the success of others was our personal barometer of success this week?
What if we committed to standing on either side of someone facing a battle and held her arms up? Let her know she wasn’t standing alone?
I’m willing to try – are you in?
Photo Courtesy of Food Network