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'F' as in Frank

Just for kicks

Every Wednesday night this month our church's children's ministry has held a game night out on the church yard. We've played everything from kickball to wiffleball and four square so far.

The kids are having a good time, we had nearly 20 the other night, and we adults are having fun trying to keep up.

This past Wednesday our game night caught soccer fever, flush off the dramatic success by the U.S. at the World Cup earlier that same day.

Ever since Joni and I lived in Europe I've enjoyed watching "football" as it's called everywhere else.

I love the fact that a 90-minute match lasts pretty much 90 minutes instead of an hour added on for commercials and timeouts.

At any rate, our game night this week took on a whole new level of interest and excitement when one of the children in the neighborhood brought his soccer ball.

The children's ministry team and I changed our game night plans on the fly, as our kickball game was abbreviated to make way for soccer.

The four bases we used for kickball were instead used for goal markers and the contest was on.

Now, I enjoy watching soccer, but I haven't had a chance to play it much aside from a few matches at a church picnic in Hungary more than 10 years ago.

So these youngsters schooled me in soccer to no end, working the ball past my feeble defense. My ball-stopping efforts made last year's Seahawk defense look good.

In fact, the opposing team's winning score was a shot attempt by one of the kids that deflected off my foot and into our goal. That's right, I'm owning up to an own goal.

I did manage to stop a few kicks in the midfield, exchanged a few passes with my teammates and even scored a goal.

But the score didn't really matter.

What mattered was the fellowship, and especially the opportunity for an hour or so to try and be a Christian role model for the kids.

I can't wait to see how the U.S. does tomorrow in the round of 16. If we win I'm guessing our game time next Wednesday will morph into a full blown soccer night.

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