It was the beginning of the end and like every year, for just a moment, all were unified in thought and action as we stood and placed our hand over our heart. Caps removed and voices hushed we focused upon the star spangled banner and listened to the recorded anthem over the scratchy loud speaker. Even as we were scorched by the late June sun all were obliged to take a moment to remember that indeed we did live in the land of the free and the home of the brave. A prayer, followed by a few mandatory announcements got closing ceremonies underway.
In case you do not have a baseball playing little boy, the closing ceremony of baseball season is
all about getting a trophy. This treasure made of hard plastic is invaluable to its recipient and represents an entire season worth of plays, runs, strikes and if you’re lucky a home run or two.
As we sat and waited for our son’s name to be called, I had some time to contemplate what the Lord had reminded me of through this baseball season.
We all hope that our children will walk away from sports played with learned technical as well as applicable life skills. Play nice with others, work together, keep a good attitude, always try your best, never give up and if you are going to go down, go down swinging!
Focus seems to be the tie that binds all of these together. If I only had a dime for every time, Tee-ball to Minors that I have heard “keep your eye on the ball!” What we choose to focus on in both baseball and in life determine how well we will do.
I will lift up my eyes to the mountains-where does my help come from? My help comes from the Lord the maker of heaven and earth. Psalms121:1-2
What we focus on always becomes the primary thing that we see. And the longer we stay focused on one thing, the bigger it tends to become within our own eyes.
As children of God, our focus and where it remains is many times a determinate of whether we will simply survive or whether we will thrive. Regardless of what comes our way if we choose to stay focused upon the Lord, who He has been in our lives and who He will be faithful to continue to be, we can get through anything.
Ya know the old adage “it doesn’t matter whether you win or lose, it’s how you play the game?” I’m quite certain that whoever made that up had never had a long trek home with a little boy who had just lost a baseball game.
The truth is, in life as well as in baseball we should always play to win. Winning does matter and we practice hard so we will win. Winning is the goal.
In games when the boys lost all hope that they could win, the way that they played reflected it. They stopped trying their best and all they were able to focus on was the fact that they were losing.
Hope deferred makes the heart sick, but a longing fulfilled is a tree of life. Proverbs 13:12
As a Child of God we must always remember that no matter what the scoreboard looks like we have already won!
When children of God become weary in life due to trials, difficulties and pain they too can lose hope. Sometimes it can feel like the other team is just too big, too strong and too fast…unbeatable.
We are reminded though-
No, despite all these things, overwhelming victory is ours through Christ, who loved us.
Father, help me always to stay focused and play to win.