Our game today didn't offer any moments to take players out. But we won a few nice pots, and hoped to win one more here....
IN THE POCKET: Ah-Qd
It's a two-table tournament, and seven players remain at ours. We start the hand with 35,000, but we're in the Big Blind. So we're substantially committed, and see no reason to hold back when our turn comes.
"All in, 35,000" we say - putting the white bounty chip in, along with everything else.
Only two others were interested in this hand. One man folds. The other, a manager at another card room, thinks it over out loud.
"I'm probably going to chip you up," he says -- but he goes ahead and calls.
"Al-Qaeda," we say as we show. He shows a meager 4-5 of hearts. This looks very promising.
ON THE FLOP: 5-8-Q (8 is a heart)
Wow - we both pair the board. But our Queen leads.
ON THE TURN: 6h
Uh-oh - now this is potential trouble. He has four hearts, for a flush draw -- in fact a straight flush draw, and a straight flush was hit at this table only a couple of hands before. By our count, he has 13 outs.
ON THE RIVER: 4s
....and he hits the more unlikely one! Two pair stun him, and leave us shaking both our head and his hand. We leave the contest in 13th place, and he gets our $25 bounty chip.
MINISTRY MOMENT: There was no "Christmas music" playing in the poker room; they call up classic hits from the late 20th century during the afternoon games. One of them was George Harrison's My Sweet Lord.
"That's a curious song," we said to several people (none of whom responded). "Jesus is my Lord - but he turns it into a song about something else."
We've mentioned this song here before. Have you noticed the last part of the song refers to "hare krishna" - as in Hinduism? Harrison apparently wanted to cut through religious divisions. But there's a problem with that:
...Then know this, you and all the people of Israel: It is by the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, whom you crucified but whom God raised from the dead, that this man stands before you healed.... Salvation is found in no one else, for there s no other name under heaven given to men by which we must be saved. - Acts 4:10, 12The Bible never mentions Buddha once. It mentions Jesus often -- and it dares to say Jesus is the only name by which you can receive salvation.
For there is one God and one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus.... - I Timothy 2:5Perhaps it's little wonder that some people call Bible-believing Christians intolerant. It's because the God who inspired the Bible demands a choice: accept Jesus as your Savior or else. What choice will you make?
UPDATED POKER SCOREBOARD: 155 final tables in 37 games (35.5%) - 25 cashes.