By Greg Johnson
You really love playing the trumpet. In fact, since you picked it up in fourth grade, you have improved a lot. Though your parents sometimes have to remind you to practice, for the most part you don’t mind taking thirty minutes or more a day to do your scales and practice assigned pieces. You carry your trumpet to school proudly, knowing you are the best.
When it comes to performing, every eye is on you. You play with more skill than anyone on any other instrument. You’ve performed not only at school talent shows and band concerts, but you even got to play in last year’s Christmas program at church. And this year you will perform a solo!
Yeah, you are at the top. That is, until she moves into the district.
She is Bonnie Williams, a girl who transferred in from another state when her dad switched jobs. Bonnie has been playing a variety of horns since second grade. Not only can she play the trumpet better than you, she can also handle the trombone, also sax and flute!
The band instructor sees how good she is at trumpet and lets the two of you play side by side. The instructor thinks the competition will be good for you.
There is no mistaking that Bonnie is good; even better than you. While you’ll still get to do the solo at church, you’re no longer king of the hill at your school when it comes to music.
It’s bad enough that Bonnie begins to play first chair—and gets the solos that you used to get. But what makes it worse is her personality. She is nice to everyone. Instead of having a big head and thinking she is God’s gift to music, she becomes friends with many of your friends. She even tries to be friendly to you.
Questions to Think On
• If this happened to you, how would you feel?
• What would you do?
a. Practice harder so you could catch up to Bonnie’s level
b. Feel like there was no use trying to get better as long as she was around and decrease your practice time
c. Talk to your parents and band teacher about quitting
d. Make friends with her and find out her secrets
• Has there ever been a time when you envied the talent someone else had in something you liked to do?
• Mom and Dad: Was there ever a time when you envied someone else? How did you respond?
What Does God Have to Say?
Be devoted to one another in brotherly love. Honor one another above yourselves. Romans 12:10
Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit, but in humility consider others better than yourselves. Philippians 2:3