Last Sabbath, I headed to Huddersfield, to attend their youth day entitled Launch out in the Deep. The day hit me in so many ways for a range of positive reasons. But what myself and those involved will probably remember the clearest was the lunch time discussion of ‘Netball is harder than basketball.’ Essentially this was myself and one other female friend discussing which sport was harder with five males. They of course were defending basketball and definitely thought that it was an insult, us even comparing the sports, let alone contemplating netball being harder. Yes you’re probably thinking we walked straight into that one and we must like a challenge. (I believe that we do not run from adversity lol).
Two unapologetic comments were made during that discussion:
- Male one ‘Is netball even a sport?’
- Male two ‘Surely if netball was harder, then men would opt to play netball instead of basketball!’
I bet you all probably want to know what the result of the discussion was? Well I was essentially playing devils advocate throughout, although I didn’t really have a firm opinion regarding which was harder. But in the end I humbled myself (like Jesus), told them they had made a sturdy enough argument for me to repent and actually accept that maybe basketball is harder than netball. At this, male two shook my hand.
We won’t even discuss what male one said. A Jamaican woman in her early 20s realises that arguing with a Jamaican uncle may be battle she cannot always fight! But we shall discuss male two’s comment.
So male two implied that men generally choose the harder options and this really played on my mind.
Why? Because I’ve come to the opinion that most of us, male or female, do not choose the harder opinion. We generally choose the option that yields the most benefits in the shortest amount of time.
Let’s take for example university. The average degree is three years, but most people know that year one is the year to slack, year two time to pull up your socks a bit, and year three is the year of work.
You don’t often hear a first year student saying ‘I’m really going to take first year seriously although it doesn’t count’ or ‘I going to seek the hardest degree I possibly can’ or ‘I’m going to do my Masters because I want to develop my intellect.’ Let’s be honest, most of us do university for that 2.1, to get a job (which makes complete sense, it increases our pool of prospects). But what I have heard, sadly very often, is ‘I don’t even remember what I learnt in university’ or ‘I don’t use my degree.’
We’re lazy. We have stopped properly educating ourselves, and I don’t blame us because we all have Google at our fingertips, and Google knows quite a lot! We choose the easiest options.
So I just want to encourage us (myself included) to instead of choosing the easiest path, choose the options that will develop you the most. That will develop your patience, your mindset, develop your character. Don’t ever have regrets that you could have done more, learnt more, been better, aimed higher. When it comes to our education and our character instead of doing the least, let’s try doing the most.
‘Our ideas of education take too narrow and too low a range. There is need of a broader scope, a higher aim. True education means more than the pursual of a certain course of study. It means more than a preparation for the life that now is. It has to do with the whole being, and with the whole period of existence possible to man. It is the harmonious development of the physical, the mental, and the spiritual powers. It prepares the student for the joy of service in this world and for the higher joy of wider service in the world to come.’