Search This Blog

Friday, July 13, 2012

Bible Bowl and Lessons Learned

Note: Musings is not meant to be personal blog, per say, but it is my hope that this testimony would have broader implications for those who might be of the same mind as me or are facing similar circumstances:

Just a couple days ago, one of the most intimate aspects of my personal life came to a sudden halt as I completed a very involved 4 year Bible Bowl career.

After the National Tournament I experienced a tremendous low, one not even worthy of such a great game such as Bible Bowl.

I didn't take me long to realize that I, to my shame, had unknowingly been judging the overall success of my Bible Bowl career solely by trophies and scholarships (for however long I don't know), so that when I played my last Nationals and left empty-handed, I felt crippled inside. 

However, I now believe strongly that coming away from Nationals without a single accolade was a blessed gift from God. 

A gift which, in my sinfulness, I never could have really appreciated if not for the Holy Spirit in me.

I'll explain:

I struggle with pride and, as is often the case with the prideful, insecurity. 

"Am I good enough?" 

"Do I really measure up?" 

Winning ANYTHING--and I mean anything--could have satisfied my pride enough for me to rest on my laurels and define my self worth by a prize, rather than in my Saviour, until that temporary fix dried up and I had to look for something else.

I truly believe I experienced a divine humbling and a clear message from God telling me that I MUST learn to trust in Him completely, believing that if I find myself in Him and only in Him that will be enough. 

And just understanding this frees me appreciate the vast number of blessings that have come from my four years in Bible Bowl.

Through Bible Bowl I have met people young old and visited places near and far where the presence of God has consumed and strengthened me, and I know that I will never be the same. 

And, of course, it is my prayer that He used me to help strengthen other as well. 

In summation, I'd like to end with some of my favorite verses from some of the texts I've memorized through Bible Bowl:

            1 Kings 18

     (21.)  Elijah went before the people and said, “How long will you waver between two opinions? If the Lord is God, follow him; but if Baal is God, follow him.” But the people said nothing.

(36.)  At the time of sacrifice, the prophet Elijah stepped forward and prayed: “O Lord, God of Abraham, Isaac and Israel, let it be known today that you are God in Israel and that I am your servant and have done all these things at your command. 37 Answer me, O Lord, answer me, so these people will know that you, O Lord, are God, and that you are turning their hearts back again.”
(38.)  Then the fire of the Lord fell and burned up the sacrifice, the wood, the stones and the soil, and also licked up the water in the trench.
(39.)  When all the people saw this, they fell prostrate and cried, “The Lord—he is God! The Lord—he is God!”

       Jonah 2

6. To the roots of the mountains I sank down;
    the earth beneath barred me in forever.
But you brought my life up from the pit,
    O Lord my God.

7. “When my life was ebbing away,
    I remembered you, Lord,
and my prayer rose to you,
    to your holy temple.

8 .“Those who cling to worthless idols
    forfeit the grace that could be theirs.
9. But I, with a song of thanksgiving,
    will sacrifice to you.
What I have vowed I will make good.
    Salvation comes from the Lord.”

2 Corinthians: 1

 3 Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of compassion and the God of all comfort, 4 who comforts us in all our troubles, so that we can comfort those in any trouble with the comfort we ourselves have received from God. 5 For just as the sufferings of Christ flow over into our lives, so also through Christ our comfort overflows.

        Chapter 3

Now the Lord is the Spirit, and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is freedom.

    Genesis 9

21. The Lord smelled the pleasing aroma and said in his heart: “Never again will I curse the ground because of man, even though[a] every inclination of his heart is evil from childhood. And never again will I destroy all living creatures, as I have done.

22. “As long as the earth endures,
seedtime and harvest,
cold and heat,
summer and winter,
day and night
will never cease.”

               Matthew 11

28 “Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. 29 Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. 30 For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.”

I praise God for the time I had in Bible Bowl and am excited to see how he will continue to use the game to glorify Him and bring believers into greater communion with His Word and, consequently, with Him.


  1. Well said Eric. I had a similar outlook when I played and it wasn't until I finished my last year that I realized the knowledge and spiritual growth I gained were more precious than all the trophies and awards. Glad you valued your time in Bible Bowl so much! Best of luck in your college plans!

    1. Thank you; I really appreciate that Josh and I'm glad I'm not the only one!

      Sincerely Eric

  2. Good thoughts Eric. I was praying for you before the nationals and will continue praying for you. If you remember what you have learned and let it draw you closer to God, you will have something more long lasting and eternal than a trophy or scholarship. Love you, Aunt Darlene