Isaac the Insecure

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#86: “Isaac the Insecure”
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Psalm 139:14

14I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well.

Luke 16:15
15He said to them, "You are the ones who justify yourselves in the eyes of men, but God knows your hearts. What is highly valued among men is detestable in God's sight.

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Isaac the Insecure

“Isaac the Insecure” is episode #86 of the Adventures in Odyssey audio series. It was written and directed by Paul McCusker, and originally aired on September 23, 1989.


Isaac Morton wants to be just like Jack Davis, but when the two are partnered up for a school assignment, it seems clear that Jack doesn't want anything to do with Isaac.


Isaac Morton is no soccer player. After Isaac botches several plays, Coach Fred Zachary politely boots him from the team. But Isaac is definitely the “Pelé” of the academic world, which he proves later in math class. He'd give up all his intelligence, though, if he could just be like Jack Davis, captain of the soccer team and the most popular guy in school.

In English class, Isaac and Jack are paired to do a report. Isaac thinks this could be his big chance to "catch" some of Jack's popularity, so he does everything he can to avoid making Jack upset. When it becomes obvious that Jack is uncomfortable having Isaac as a partner, Isaac resolves to work harder on the report so Jack will like him.

But their teacher corners Isaac and forces him to reveal how much work he's doing and how little work Jack seems to be doing. The teacher scolds Jack, who, in turn, rakes Isaac over the coals. Isaac determines to make it up to Jack by doing the entire report himself. But when Isaac gets to the library, the librarian tells him that someone else is already there, doing a report on Isaac's subject.

Isaac hunts down the copycat and discovers that it's Jack! It turns out that Jack didn't want to be Isaac's partner because he felt inferior around Isaac. Much to their surprise, they both have the same insecurities. They get down to work, and Isaac discovers he's made a new friend — one who has turned out to be a lot like him.

Discussion Questions

  1. Have you ever felt like Isaac and Jack?
    • What did you do to regain confidence?
  2. What are some of your special gifts?
  3. How can you boost someone's self-esteem?



VERSION DIFFERENCE: [view] The broadcast version of this episode features an opening wrap in which a disheveled Chris visits Francois's beauty parlor seeking help looking "young and luxurious" to impress a few visiting friends.

  • This episode introduces Isaac Morton, a long-term AIO character. It also begins a mini-series of programs that bear Isaac's name.
  • Jack Davis and Isaac do a report on the life of famous Christian author and apologist C.S. Lewis.
  • One of the students Mrs. Rush pairs off is named Jim Custer, presumably after the actor known best for playing young Whit on the program.



Isaac Morton: Are you cutting me from the team, Mr. Zachary?
Fred Zachary: Cutting you? Now, Isaac, "cutting you" is whatchacall a very harsh word! It sounds like a brutal slice, a severing, a destructive act of whatchacall—
Isaac Morton: You're cutting me from the team.
Fred Zachary: Yes.

Fred Zachary: Oh, Isaac, it's not that you're not good, it's just, you know, whatchacall.

Isaac Morton: I can't believe it! If someone else does C.S. Lewis after all I've gone through, I'm gonna be really mad. Unless they're bigger than me. In that case I'll probably go home and have a good cry.

Francois: This reminds me of the story of Isaac. Do you know the story of Isaac?
Chris Anthony: Mmmm, I don't think so.
Francois: Well, sit back and we'll get started on it right after this.
Chris Anthony: Wait a minute... that's my line.