Dad Fail

Last Monday we ordered tickets for the Texas Rangers playoff game that took place on Saturday.  Lea and I couldn’t wait to tell the boys we’d be going. All week long we talked about how much fun we were going to have as a family. I couldn’t wait to make some more memories as a family.  I also did my best to rub it in the noses of all my friends that I’d be at the game and they wouldn’t.

Due to Cooper’s flag football game on Saturday, we weren’t going to be able to get to The Ballpark in Arlington until just before the game. We rushed around Saturday morning, got our lunches and coolers packed and were off by 11:30. A fast four hour drive would give us just enough time to get parked and get to our seats by first pitch.

When I saw the sellout crowd at the stadium, I decided to drop the family off at the corner and go find parking. I told them I’d meet them at our seats. Looked like we were going to make it just in time for the first pitch.

Just a few minutes later I found parking, paid them my $10 and was off to meet Lea and the boys. I was still walking to the ballpark when Parker sent me a text that said to meet them at the ticket office for new tickets, because our printed tickets weren’t scanning at the gate. When I got within about 100 yards of the ballpark Taylor called and said, “Dad, our tickets are not right. Our tickets are for a different game!”

Long … sad story short … Lea and the boys just found out that our tickets wouldn’t work for this game. Somehow we’d printed, ordered or were given the wrong tickets.

I watched Lea and the boys all walk towards me, away from the ballpark, while the other late-comers were walking towards the ballpark. Their faces couldn’t hide the disappointment. I felt horrible. I felt HUGE amounts of guilt. I had ordered the tickets, I was in-charge of that one thing … and I’d failed.

When they walked up, I could only do one thing, apologize. I think I said, “I’m sorry!” at least 100 times. They were all very forgiving of their mistake-prone father. We went to the car and drove away from the ballpark. It would be another 4 hour drive home that was really quiet. We stopped for supper a couple hours down the road at Buffalo Wild Wings, where we could watch the end of the game. The Ranger’s loss was just a little more salt in the wound.

It will be a long day that the Morgan family will never forget. In all of it, there were a couple of lessons I learned (yes, besides making sure I have the right tickets). Here’s what learned:

  • As much as I hated disappointing my family, I’d ALWAYS rather fail them intellectually, than spiritually or morally.
  • As we stood outside the ballpark unable to get in, the crowd cheered wildly at something inside. Cooper looked up at me and asked, “Dad, what do you think just happened?” It broke my heart to tell him, “I don’t have a clue, son. We don’t get to go in.” When I die, I don’t ever want to get that close to heaven … to hear the shouts of joy, the cheering and celebration, only to find out I don’t get to go in. I want to confidently lead my family up to those pearly gates … have my ticket scanned (Jesus) and hear it said, “Welcome, we’re glad you’re here. Come on in and join the celebration.”

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Article by Trey Morgan

I am a Christian husband and father, who moonlights as the minister for the church of Christ in Childress, Texas. My wife Lea and I have been married for 25 years. We are doing our best to raise our 4 boys, who are all growing up way too fast. Read 1182 articles by
42 Comments Post a Comment
  1. Greg England says:

    Been there, done that. Not w/ Rangers’ tickets, but in other situations. Not a good feeling, but family is forgiving. Good analogy!!

  2. Ginger Wilson says:

    Oh Trey, I can so relate to your story. As parents, we sure take it hard on ourselves when we feel we disappoint our kids. I’ve had Madie tell me when I was in a particular situation, “Mom, don’t worry…sometimes that is just how life goes!” I love how you relate the situation to our eternal life and you are so right, how awful would it be to stand outside of heaven and hear the celebrations only knowing we could not enter.

    I’m so sorry about the mixup and know your precious family made the most of the day they had together! :)

  3. Peter P says:

    Awwww…. I’m, so sorry!

  4. L.C.T. says:

    I LOVE the lessons you manage to draw from this. So so so wise.

  5. Debbie Holder says:

    What an amazing analogy to compare your experience to one who cannot enter the gates of Heaven! I want to make sure my ticket scans correctly that glorious day! Never say you have failed; you are one of the most amazing fathers, husbands, friends, pastors…that I have ever known!!

  6. Dee Andrews says:

    Wow, Trey – what a story. The most interesting thing is the analogies God put in your heart to share with all of us and to make some good out of something bad that happened.

    Did you ever find out what the deal was on the tickets?

    Have a blessed day today, y’all!


    • Trey Morgan says:

      I’m not sure what happened with the tickets. We weren’t the only ones that had trouble. I think the Rangers got in such a hurry to sell playoff tickets that they sold them without “dates and times”. I think many were confused at what tickets they ordered.

  7. Katherine says:

    Oh, friend, I felt so bad for you when you told me on Saturday night. I was honestly wondering how you were able to get that many tickets so close to the day of the game, but never thought you had the wrong game! Hopefully, if we can pull out this last game-you might still be able to use the tickets!! You did not fail & I am so glad your family understands :) Trust me, they did not play that well anyway!

    I love your analogy. I also want to hear Him say, “Welcome, good & faithful servant! Well done!”

    I imagine there will be baseball in heaven :)

  8. Steve Gauntt says:

    I nearly sent a text to you during the game asking how it was in the cheap seats – glad I didn’t…certainly wouldn’t want to add a little vinegar to the salt.

    I’m curious as to whether you changed your sermon for Sunday. Seems that the parable of the ten virgins would have been particularly powerful on the day after hearing, “I don’t know you” at the gate.

    Third, and finally, I was kind of hoping to read about how security had chased you for thirty minutes as you leapt the turnstyles and charged your way forward to claim the seats that were rightfully yours…

    • Trey Morgan says:

      Steve, I bet I had 20 text messages from people asking, “How’s the seats?” and “I wish I was there with you.” I was SO bummed out, I didn’t answer a one. I did use the story in my sermon on Sunday. It fit right in with my sermon. Surely not the way I like to get my sermon illustrations.

  9. OUCH! I did a similar thing with a Mets game years ago…thankfully we laugh about that now. I love how you related it back to the Kingdom though…good thoughts!

  10. Jo Baird says:

    Dixie told me yesterday that you & yours didn’t get to go to the game. I hadn’t heard, but I was so sorry. I’m glad that your family forgave you, you tried so hard. That counts! I am so glad that we have a forgiving, understanding Father that loves us more than we can ever fathom. Love, Mom

  11. Duane Scott says:

    That last analogy.


    I don’t want to get that close to heaven either and hear the cheering only to find out I can’t go in.

    I’m so sorry about your day!

  12. Jason says:

    Being a Philadelphia sports fan, I’ll put this the way we’d put it to each other in Philly.

    Man, that sucks.

    (Love the analogy but man…the ticket thing still sucks.)

  13. Gallagher says:

    As a life-long Pirates fan, things could have been worse, you could have been made to watch nine innings of a Pirates game!

  14. Christi says:

    What a story….I am so sorry! :0(

  15. Maggie Beth says:

    Fail? Really? — “Dad Fail?” — that is a little harsh…..

    How many men were sitting in there with their “buddies”, their co-workers, customers or even their girlfriends?? – All the while their sons’ were home wishing they we were at the game (or ANYWHERE!) with their dad.

    And why didn’t dad bring his son? Dad did not want to “deal with” his kid while he watched the game. Your heart was in the right place, God was not shocked by the situation – it played out exactly as He planned…..and you still achieved your goal ~ you spent time with your family. And got some spiritual insight.

    I am very sorry it happened. I know you were all disappointed —

    BTW your ‘real friends’ will appreciate how this situation felt – and they won’t “rub your nose in it”….(WINK)……

    “OOPPS” maybe —- but not a fail……..

    • Trey Morgan says:

      Oh, there were plenty of worse things I could have done. I’m just glad if I had to make a mistake, it was something like this. It probably made it worse that we spent the entire week talking it up. The amazing thing is, I have a couple of buddies that are good at rubbing my nose in it, when I do something stupid. They felt so bad for me they didn’t rub my nose in this one. :)

  16. NB says:

    I’m sure that was a tough situation, especially when it involved a long drive back home. But, hey, mistakes happen all the time. The difference between a terrible mistake and a mix up is a little time and a little laughter.

    I have to agree with the other commenters, the analogy was excellent!

  17. Greg England says:

    It could have been much worse … it could have been tickets for a BRAVES game!! -:) So much for the Braves, and Alabama, this season. Pulling for your Rangers, though I have no idea if they are still playing their series or not.

    • Trey Morgan says:

      I’m a long time Braves fan too. I was pulling for them. I would have loved to see one more World Series with Bobby Cox and Chipper (not your dog… ha) in it.

  18. Melissa Poling says:

    Trey, I LOVED this story, not because you missed out on something great with your family, but because as a family, you can all remember that heaven lesson that you applied at the end. Those are such bittersweet moments when something disappointing happens and then God reminds us why we are really here as parents. It’s so comforting to know you are getting the job done in the important, life changing, eternal areas.
    Proud of you!

    • Trey Morgan says:

      Melissa … you being proud of me makes me feel better than I felt Saturday. Proud wasn’t on my list of emotions that day. I will tell you this, my kids were incredibly forgiving to me. None of them made me feel worse.

  19. David Gallagher says:

    Wow thanks for the story Trey! Your last bullet/paragraph says it all..

    Thanks for sharing your life with all of us!

  20. Brittainy Taylor says:

    Great analogy. I hate that your family experienced this … but you will all look back and laugh on it later. The number one thing about family is making memories and “living” life together. No matter if you got in the game or not you were all still together and it was definitely a memory maker.

  21. fraizerbaz says:

    I am so sorry this happened to you!

    I bought Diamondback tickets online once, and when we got to the will-call window, they couldn’t find them. I thought we were going to get turned away, but somehow it managed to work out.

    Were you able to get a refund at least?

  22. Yeah, but on the bright side, think of all that after-game traffic you avoided!


About Me

Trey Morgan Here are my thoughts about marriage, family, raising children, humor, faith and the life God intended for us all. I am a Christian husband and father, who moonlights as the minister for the church of Christ in Childress, Texas. My wife Lea and I have been married for 25 years. We are doing our best to raise our 4 boys, who are all growing up way too fast.

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Trey Morgan
Husband, father and cancer survivor & Senior Minister for the Childress Church of Christ. Tweets about life, marriage, Texas Rangers and randomness.
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