Spencer's broken nose

Sunday our 12-year-old son, Spencer, had his nose broken in a basketball game. Another player collided into him, driving his forehead into Spencer's nose. In an instant, Spencer was lying facedown on the floor, blood pouring from both nostrils onto the hardwood.

As horrible as it was for Spencer, it was also a strange moment for me as a father. I'm not squeamish, but it feels odd to see that much blood pouring out of your son. When I got to Spencer, there was blood everwhere. All sorts of thoughts went through my mind at the same time. "What is the best thing to do for a bloody nose like this?" "Why didn't that stupid kid watch what he was doing?" "Why did this have to happen to my kid?" "Should I take him to the hospital?" Not all of these are very sanctified thoughts, but in the blink of an eye, they were all there. Some of them were self-centered, others were born of frustration, and the best of them arose out of compassion for my hurting son. In compressed moments like this, what runs through our minds reveals that there is a lot going on within us. It reminds me of the importance of being trained in the disciplines of the Christian life so in the moment, the best response is the one that comes out.

For the record, I didn't yell at the other kid or shake my fists at the sky. I quietly tended to Spencer. :-)

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