With Heart

“We’re in the middle of a war.” – Phoebe, while blasting Nerf darts.

Family Feud TournamentEvery year the family sits down at Granny’s and fills out our tournament brackets. This year we went high tech and joined ESPN tournament challenge. So it is no longer possible for me to skip a few family dinners to avoid looking like a fool…

And I am foolish with my brackets. I always go with my heart. I pick my favorite teams and love to choose underdogs. Occasionally I am right (I chose Harvard), but this strategy really gets me in trouble in the later rounds – where I picked my favorite team to win it all… Go Mizzou!

And this year I spread my brilliance to Megan. She asked me who to choose – why she would ask me, the perennial Royal’s optimist? –  and I told her to go with her heart. So the Oklahoma girl chose Oklahoma State to win it all…

After day one we are both without our champion. The only ones in the group – as you can see from my phone’s screen. And yes, that is Granny in the lead.

Of course Granny’s heart is to win! She does not get caught up in the sentimentalities that plague my bracket. She knows this is war. And relationships are out the window… (It also helps that she has zero concern for sports – unless one of the grand kids are playing).


Life seems to have two ethics. If you want to win the bracket or are in business or in war you need to set aside your heart (feeling) and use your mind (logic). But to excel in relationships the opposite is required.

And I certainly drop my life into different categories. Finances are driven by logic. But if I am in a “conversation” with Megan feelings drive my reaction. Sports – for better or worse – is of the heart. Planning for the future, family and church, is a project of the mind. In each I let a different part of me dominate the decision.

But watching my bracket again slide into disarray I wonder if my decisions need more balance. It is my heart that leads me to help Granny input her answers. But my mind might help me see Missouri was destined to lose the first game (did they beat anyone decent away form home?).

Finding a balance may be better in all of life…

… but then who would root for the Royals?

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