Monopolizing Monopoly


 “For who hath despised the day of small things?” -Zech 4:10a 

Growing up, my favorite board game was Life.  How can you not like being represented by a blue or pink peg in a tiny car?  With one spin of the mini wheel of fortune, you are given a career.  In just a few moves, you’re married!  And you have no choice but to get married, as the game is interrupted by a sudden stop!  Just awesome.

But it wasn’t until I was almost 30 that I finally got a true taste of one of the most recognizable board games in the world: Monopoly.  I was deprived.  Cheated.  How could my parents let this happen?  One special New Year’s, a 5’13” boy in my youth group named Tim brought over his Armed Forces edition.  Childhood friend, Pastor Jesse Johnson (we were pretty childish in college), joined our game.

I did a quick recon of the board and almost instinctively knew my strategy.  I would purchase the cheapest properties as quickly as possible.  My plan was put into play and the other two seasoned “generals” snickered at what seemed to be a rookie mistake.  As they waited for the funds to acquire more expensive real estate, I was building and expanding and collecting rent.  They were soon brought down by my mighty forces!

“Beginners luck!” they claimed.

Now, as the BBQ Princess and BBQ Boy II have gotten old enough to enjoy the game that so effectively teaches corporate greed, I have continued to use the same strategy.  The same results of dominance show forth!  People tend to put all their hopes on upscale Boardwalk, while the BBQthDirector will build on the ghetto ‘hoods.  Call me a slum lord, if you wish.  But if you play with me, you’ll more than likely call me … heh, heh …  winner.

All board game arrogance aside, there’s a lesson in how you look at Monopoly.  It’s not always the person who owns the expensive neighborhoods that wins.  The cheaper neighborhoods allow you to build houses and hotels quickly.  Don’t underestimate Baltic and Vermont.

In Zechariah, the prophet of God is given the job of encouraging Zerubbabel, the foreman of the Temple rebuilding project.  What a task!  They certainly felt the pressure of undertaking such an important job.  In Zechariah chapter four, all they had was a foundation … and the promise of God.  It’s easy to look upon such humble beginnings and get discouraged.  With just the foundation set, there was still so much more to do.  But the people were told to not despise the day of small things.  The grand and glorious completion would come.  But someone has to do the dirty work.

There are many things in our lives that may seem so menial, so ordinary.  So insignificant.  But we must be faithful with the little things, if God is going to trust us with what we may consider the big things.  God is consistently doing things in our lives to make us better.  Stronger.  You may be in “the day of small things” right now.  That’s okay.  It’s a foundation that God can build on.

**Okay, I admit, this started as a shameless attempt to drive more traffic to BarBeQuethMinistry! using another board game.  But I think it turned into a decent devotional!  We’ll see if it’s as effective as Candy Land.**


13 comments so far

  1. Renae on

    I am glad my brother brought you back to Monopoly. I like the game I just find it long and so I don’t play it often, although I do have it in our game closet. (perks of a wedding registry) 🙂 I do enjoy your game devotions!

  2. Becka on

    That was encouraging (and entertaining to read). Being faithful in little things can get discouraging as you don’t necessarily see what benefit the task may have. This was a great little devotional. I liked the game of LIFE a lot, not so big a fan of Monopoly (I always lose). Since neither Renae or I like it too much, it is probably why Tim jumped at the chance to play it with others! lol

  3. jaynepomuceno on

    After all these years, I really do feel like I’m still at the foundation stage. And, yes, Monopoly takes a long time. But if you’d just get your priorities straight, and MAKE time for it, you would appreciate it! It’s the best! Right up there with Balderdash (hmmm, can I turn that one into a devotional?).

  4. Jane on

    I never had (and still don’t have) the attention span for Monopoly. Have you ever played that one? It’s the hostest with the mostest! You should write on that one! Thanks for the devotional, very encouraging.

  5. jenmarie on

    lol, if you really want I will just keep clicking on your blog all day long while I sit at the reference desk… 🙂

  6. jaynepomuceno on

    No thanks, Jen. Maybe I’ll just post something about being a red head!

  7. S.J. on

    Hahaha!!! I just got a mental picture of Jay with Jenny’s long red hair!!! HAHA! 😀

  8. Robb on

    YES!!! Monopoly… is… AWESOME!!! i love it!!! but i would KILL YOU… I have NEVER lost at it!!! I AM PRO!!! so i might have to take you on some time.. any place… anytime!!!

  9. jaynepomuceno on

    Whatever, Robby!

    Bring. It. On.

  10. James on

    This reminds me I have to remember to register for the debit card version of Monopoly next time I’m at Target and we are updating the wedding registry.

  11. jaynepomuceno on

    Yeah, I’ve heard of that! Man, technology sure is taking us places! What’s next, remote controlled checkers?

  12. James on

    I’m still waiting for the iPhone application that will let me use it as a tv remote. Think of the uses…playing tricks on professors using a tv, turning the tvs in lobbys and airports all over the place to FOX news while you wait…so many uses. My favorite technology,when it is developed, will be when I will be able to have my car drive me places while I do something else.

  13. jaynepomuceno on

    Yeah, FOX news would be good. But I would change the channel to Food Network!

    By the way, folks, Monopoloy hasn’t come through with the search engines. Candy Land is still going strong!

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