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God, Baseball, and Life


Too often I see people treating life much like a game especially with the younger generation coming up. So many younger people have played video games so long that they treat life much the same way but as we know, once life is over, you do not get a redo. This is not Mario or many of the famous video game titles that have captured the attention and imagination of millions.

The allure of video games is real and I get it as I have played many in my life. However, the older that I grow, the more that I realize that life resembles the game of baseball rather than a video game as baseball is a game that is played day in and day out. While you give your best each time you’re called on, sometimes, you will not have your best but life is not about always being right as scripture tells us that we will fail: “Man that is born of a woman is of few days, and full of trouble” (Job 14:1).

Notice that scripture does not say that just believers or just nonbelievers but rather, those born of woman will have troubles. God is honest and tells us that all of us will fail at some point in our lives but failing does not mean failure. When we fail at something, we get back up and try again just as you do in a baseball game but when we stop trying and quit then we fail. As mentioned earlier, though, life is not about getting it right all the time but about our efforts. When we fall, we have to get back up and dust ourselves off and try again.

Not succeeding is something that all of the greats are known for. There isn’t a figure in scripture that isn’t known for doing something wrong and the same is true for any person who has ever lived on this Earth. Proverbs 24:16 explains this very principle: “For a just man falleth seven times, and riseth up again: but the wicked shall fall into mischief.” Christ warns us different times that if we follow Him things will not be easy including a division among people including of family and friends and persecution by man and while we have scripture to lead and guide us, we will sometimes hurt and fail. None of us are exempt from these things.

For a just man falleth seven times, and riseth up again: but the wicked shall fall into mischief.”

–Proverbs 24:16

However, just as with the game of baseball, it’s not about always doing things right but rather, taking one day at a time. After a good day, give praise to God and do your best in growing in such a moment but after a bad day, remember to praise God and do your best to grow with the bad performance. Whether good or bad, we should grow and do our best to be better than the day before.

No, it’s not a race with anyone else as we have been given our very own journey with a special purpose and mission while on this Earth and this was so before our physical creation: “Before I formed thee in the belly I knew thee; and before thou camest forth out of the womb I sanctified thee, [and] I ordained thee a prophet unto the nations” (Jeremiah 1:5).

One of the best known baseball executives and General Managers, Pat Gillick, is known for saying that “Baseball is about talent, hard work, and strategy. But at the deepest level, it’s about love, integrity, and respect.” This is very similar to every aspect of life. Sure, it’s about the talent(s) that you’ve been given and building on them through hard work and strategy but there’s a much bigger picture behind these talents and it’s about the life that you live built on integrity and the respect that you give and the love that you show:

Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things [are] honest, whatsoever things [are] just, whatsoever things [are] pure, whatsoever things [are] lovely, whatsoever things [are] of good report; if [there be] any virtue, and if [there be] any praise, think on these things.”

—Philippians 4:8

Another famous executive, Branch Rickey, maybe best known for signing Jackie Robinson which officially broke baseball’s color barrier is also known for saying that “Baseball is a game of inches” and this is true for life. We put one foot in front of the other and take one moment at a time. When we get too far ahead of ourselves, we trip and fall. Just like a baseball game, you must take one base at a time or you will be called out.

When you get behind, you fight your way back just as you do in life. Sometimes, the catching up part is tremendously hard but when you put all that effort into you, you appreciate it more rather than it just being handed to you and while it may be hard, the hard is what makes it so enjoyable.

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Written by Billy Ray Parrish


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