Setting a Precedent

Warning. You may have heard this story…its widely told but rarely told this way…

Sooooo…one year about 13 years ago at Kids Camp, I decided that I would prove to my leader that I could in fact successfully do a backflip. I had already completed 2 with my friend before my leader walked in. I was very confident because I had already done  it twice and I was just gonna show her I was right.  

Well turns out that I WAS RIGHT because I completed the roundoff back handspring!! Three cheers for me proving the adults wrong!

This success was actually slightly tainted by a series of unfortunate events that resulted in the beginning of my favorite children's church rule, "No Flipping".

How did my success turn into another set of restrictions you may ask? Well I set a precedent that’s how. I first was introduced to the word precedent and the phrase "setting the precedent" in a media law class I took in college. The term precedent means "an earlier event or action that is regarded as an example or guide to be considered in subsequent similar circumstances." We would be given a court case to study and then would have to research all the cases that came before it that were used to help the judge make a final decision. Sometimes, there were no previous cases to study and so that new case would became the new standard for that situation in the future.

So before me and my amazing talents took the stage, there was never a "no flipping" rule. Unfortunately for my pride, reputation, and talents of many other kids whom I was fighting for (or so I thought), my wrist just had to snap just enough to fracture. My leader made a make shift sling for my arm, rushed me out the door and down the mountain to my father to take me to the emergency room. Before I woke up the "No Flipping" rule was already in affect.

As I was reading through Romans 5 in my NLT bible, the verses 12- 14 really stood out to me.

"12 When Adam sinned, sin entered the world. Adam's sin brought death, so death spread to everyone, for everyone sinned. 13Yes people sinned even before the law was given. But it was not counted as sin because there was not yet any law to break. 14Still everyone died from the time of Adam to the time of Moses even those who did not disobey an explicit commandment of God, as Adam did. Now Adam is a symbol a representation of Christ, who was yet to come." 

Adams ONE sin, messed up things for all of us. He set a precedent that all who are born into this world are born into sin. That's similar to how my successfully unsuccessful backflip situation set the precedent for all current and future kids in children's church. In this same way your actions, decisions, thoughts, words ect. can set a precedent for your life and even maybe the lives of people in your sphere of influence. 

What precedents are you setting for your spiritual, physical and mental "13 years" from now? Are they things that will harm or help you?

Be mindful of your today as it most definitely sets a precedent for your tomorrow.