The Blogger Herself

The Blogger Herself

Sunday, August 26, 2012

Jesus and Baseball?!


This was written on a different day than post date.

        As the Little League United States championship game is taking place, at this moment, I feel as though I'm reliving part of my childhood. My brother played baseball from the time he was four until his late teen years. He continued to play softball and some baseball throughout his college years. As long as I can remember, he has enjoyed athletics.  Growing up, I can remember spending numerous hours at the baseball field. Sometimes he would have  as many as three games per day.  I loved watching him and his teammates. I always have marveled at my brother's ability and talents in baseball and other athletics settings.  His ability  to tune things out amazes me. Here's what I mean, the crowd could be cheering, but, while everyone is shouting how you should hold the bat, or what directions you should  follow, : my brother has a remarkable ability to focus on his task at hand.  I however am not good at tuning things out around me  Excessive noise can sometimes send me into a mental  overload..  As I watched games over the years, I recall frequently the coaches would tell the players keep their eyes focused on the ball, and to protect the plate, meaning swing to hit if it's in the strike zone. If not, let the pitcher walk you if it isn't. At least, that was my understanding from years of observation.  The coaches would often comment on how my brother would "watch the Ball all the way in" which helped him hit the ball well and get on base.  If you think about that for a minute there is a spiritual lesson in baseball.  At least when you are batting, you must keep your eye on the ball in order to succeed. You must not allow yourself to become distracted by the cheering crowd or the critics.  You cannot wallow in the last strike out or fielding error.    In our spiritual walk, we are told that key to being victorious is to "fix our eyes on Jesus, just like in baseball, life offers so many  distractions that often entice us to take our eyes off Christ, who has won our victory!Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles. And let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us, fixing our eyes on Jesus, the pioneer and perfecter of faith. For the joy set before him he endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God. Consider him who endured such opposition from sinners, so that you will not grow weary and lose heart."  Heb. 12:1-3

  Worry, deadlines, pressures, changes, trials, and false beliefs, can all take our focus  away from the eternal things,  Our joy and peace can be quickly stolen, not only by daily events or negative outlooks of our own, but also the outlook of others. This is much like when a player steals base in a baseball game.  Last week, there was one day where my circumstances were noticeably  out of my control, and it was only when I turned my eyes back to Jesus through God's presence, and a friend's encouragement,  I was reminded not  to become distracted by the situation.  I may have struck out that day, but that won't be my last at bat, and just maybe next time I will keep my eyes on Jesus, as He leads me to victory, despite the distractions which surround me.  What or who keeps you focused in this "game" called life?