My friend Frank told me the following story. Frank is the servant leader I wrote about a couple of weeks ago. I loved the story so much I’ve found myself retelling it often. It’s a fun story with a good lesson. I hope you enjoy it as much as I do.
Frank the Enforcer
Frank’s coach grabbed him by his lacrosse jersey. Pulling him close, he eyeballed him and yelled, “Get ready to go in. You gotta win this fight! You gotta change the momentum!”
Frank’s professional lacrosse team was playing in the finals. They were down by two goals. Time was running out, and the momentum was with the other team. It was time for that to change. If his team was going to win, it was going to be up to him. Frank was ready.
Frank was the enforcer on his team. Like the enforcer in hockey, his job was to go in and rough up the opposing player who had roughed up his teammate. Their star player had just taken a cheap shot, and his coach had about had it. Now was the time for Frank to do his job.
Frank’s Time Had Come
“I couldn’t wait to go in. I was pumped. I saw the guy I had to get it on with. My job was simple. Start a fight and win the fight,” he said.
His coach screamed, “Get in there!”
“Soon as the coach gave me the green light, I jumped the boards. I ran as fast as I could with only one man in my sights—the guy who had banged up our best player. I was going to make him pay.
“I got right next to the guy and laid into him. Within a few seconds, his helmet was off, and I had his shirt over his head. I was pounding him. The crowd was going crazy. I was going crazy. The refs eventually jumped on both of us and broke up the fight.
“I was walking to the penalty box, and the ref asked, ‘Where do you think you’re going?’
“I’m headed to the penalty box,” he answered the ref.
You’re Outta Here!
“There is no penalty time for that behavior. You are out of the game. Get out of here right now! I don’t want to see you again,” said the ref.
“That’s not fair. I should get five to seven minutes for fighting,” Frank argued.
“Fighting. That was the most premeditated, flagrant foul I have ever seen. You didn’t come to play. You came to fight,” said the ref.
What Frank Forgot
“What makes you say that?” asked Frank.
“When you charged onto the field, you didn’t even bring your stick, helmet, or gloves! You’re out of here!” he said.
Frank looked at his coach, and all he saw was him shaking his head and laughing. The whole team was laughing. But the crowd was going nuts.
The momentum changed. Frank’s team won. But he wasn’t there to see it. Frank watched from the locker room.
Passion wins championships. But if you want to be there when the game ends, make sure you jump in with the right equipment.
Also published on Medium.