When my nephew Lawson was three years old, he asked me to play some basketball. A towheaded spark plug of a boy, he delights in anything round and bouncy. When he spotted the basketball and goal in my driveway, he couldn't resist.
The ball, however, was as big as his midsection. The basket was three times his height. His best heaves fell way short. So I set out to help him. I lowered the goal from ten feet to eight feet. I led him closer to the target. I showed him how to "granny toss" the ball. Nothing helped. The ball never threatened the net. So I gave him a lift. With one hand on his back and my other beneath his little bottom, I lifted him higher and higher until he was eye level with the rim.
"Make a basket, Lawson!" I urged. And he did. He rolled the ball over the iron hoop, and down it dropped. Swoosh!
And how did little Lawson respond?
Still cradled in my hands, he punched both fists into the air and declared, "All by myself! All by myself!"
A bit of an overstatement, don't you think, little fellow? After all, who held you? Who steadied you? Who showed you the way? Aren't you forgetting somebody?
Max Lucado, Outlive Your Life Nashville: Thomas Nelson, 2010, 111.
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Image: "Make a basket, Lawson!" I urged.