Playing Favorites by Randy Rowley 5/18/12 ©


Do you have a favorite gun, one that you show off to your friends more often than any other? Mine is a Remington Model 700 BDL in .25-06 Remington. It has the old style hinged floor plate (popular before box magazines came into vogue) with a quick release button and a button to release the bolt. It has a 24” long barrel. It is presently topped with a Vortex Crossfire II 3X-9X x 50mm matte finish scope with a V-Brite (illuminated) reticle. It is mounted with Leupold see-through rings, which allows the rifle’s iron sights to be used. The rifle is covered with a Kane gun chap, which completely protects the Monte Carlo high gloss walnut stock. The gun chap is covered with a bullet band that holds nine shells. Attached to the rifle is a Safari Sling.  I had the 7 lb. pull factory trigger adjusted to 3 lbs. and had the barrel free-floated, but have made no other modifications to it.

My father bought this rifle for me when I turned 16 years old. I have used it to take many deer, hogs, a javelina, and a turkey. It’s an old friend that I count on to bring home the bacon. One day my son will inherit it from me. Hopefully his son will inherit it from him. I hope that they treat it as well as I have.

You probably also have a favorite rod & reel, knife, duck call, fishing lure, and a host of other outdoors gear.

But what about a favorite child?

If you have a favorite child you wouldn’t be the first parent guilty of favoritism. Genesis Chapter 27 tells the first story of favoritism – the story of Rebekah and her wicked scheme to have Jacob, her favorite son, steal the blessing that Esau, Jacob’s older twin brother, was scheduled to soon receive. Isaac, their father, had grown old and blind and knew that death was near. He commanded Esau to go kill some wild game and prepare it for him. Afterwards Isaac would give Esau his blessing.

After Esau left, Rebekah, who had heard Isaac’s request had Jacob bring her two goats. She prepared the goats to Isaac’s liking. She also had Jacob put on Esau’s clothes and covered his hands and neck with the goatskins. Jacob then went to his father to serve him the goat meat. Isaac initially thought that something was amiss, but Jacob was able to convince Isaac that he was Esau. Isaac then gave Jacob the blessing that was intended for Esau.

Shortly thereafter Esau returned, prepared the game that he had killed, and brought it to his father. Both men then learned of Rebekah’s and Jacob’s deceit. Esau asked Isaac to also bless him, but Isaac had only one blessing and refused to bless Esau, who then vowed to kill Jacob. But Jacob saved himself by fleeing to his uncle’s house in Harran.

Sadly, Jacob did not learn from his and his mother’s folly. He also had two favorite sons out of his 12 boys. His favoritism resulted in Joseph becoming proud and haughty. He rubbed the fact that he was their father’s favorite into his brothers’ faces, which cost him his freedom and almost cost him his life.

Three of the nine passages in the Bible that command us to not show favoritism are:

  • 1 Timothy 5:21 says, “I charge you, in the sight of God and Christ Jesus and the elect angels, to keep these instructions without partiality, and to do nothing out of favoritism.”
  • James 2:1 says, “My brothers, as believers in our glorious Lord Jesus Christ, don’t show favoritism.”
  • James 2:9 says, “But if you show favoritism, you sin and are convicted by the law as lawbreakers.”

You may be asking “I’ve been showing favoritism to one of my children, what I should do?”  As with any sin it must be confessed.  1 John 1:9 says, “If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness.”  We must acknowledge our sin and turn it over to the Lord.  Ask him to make us aware of all the ways that we have shown favoritism.  Then elevate the children who we have neglected to the same status of your previous favorite.  In essence – make them all our favorites.

You might me thinking, “but what about their behavior?” or “what about the fact that they want nothing to do with me?” Both are irrelevant. Don’t look for excuses to keep sinning. You must do the right thing and trust the Lord to restore the relationship. To be forgiven, you might have to go to the children you have been neglecting and confess your sin to them and ask their forgiveness. James 5:16a says, “Therefore confess your sins to each other and pray for each other so that you may be healed.”

A lot of men think that “love” is spelled “m-o-n-e-y,” but the best way to spell “love” is “t-i-m-e.” Find out what your neglected children like to do and go do it with them, even if you don’t like it. Ask the Lord to give you a love for it. Find ways to honor, appreciate, admire, and cherish them. Tell them several times a week how much you love them. Brag on them to their friends and yours. There should be no doubt in their minds of their place in your heart. As Proverbs 16:24 says, “Pleasant words are a honeycomb, sweet to the soul and healing to the bones.”

Avoid trying to make them reciprocate. They might have to see your change in behavior over an extended period of time and make sure that it’s not a passing fad. Don’t try to buy their love and forgiveness. They don’t want your money – they want you! They want you to pull them out of your cabinet and show them to your friends saying, “Look what I’ve got!”

Randy with his Remington Model 700
Categories : Devotionals

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Bible verse of the day

I appeal to you, brothers and sisters, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that all of you agree with one another in what you say and that there be no divisions among you, but that you be perfectly united in mind and thought.

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