Inspirational Thought of the Day:
The curve balls in this life weren’t meant to defeat us, but to challenge us to rise and play ball.
2 Corinthians 10:4
“The weapons we fight with are not the weapons of the world. On the contrary, they have divine power to demolish strongholds.”
I love baseball. There was nothing like watching my son play and play hard. But the imminent fear of a fly ball whacking you in the face was always looming in the corner of the minds of the spectators.
I have witnessed such incidences many times. One woman was knocked unconscious and taken away by an ambulance, some ball players themselves were carried off the field and still other spectators foamed at the mouth for the opportunity to lunge and catch the ball . . . all pressing on, for the love of the game.
This past week I sat in the hospital for three days while my son had surgery for a broken femur – not from a baseball game, but from a slow bicycle ride. His roommate, however, had several crushed bones in his face from a baseball. My darling husband, too, also has a lump on his face from the time he took a shot from the ball himself.
Sometimes life throws you crazy curve balls. The question is, do we pick up the ball dealt to us and play or let ourselves get socked by the balls and defeated when they come our way? After sizing up the speed of a ball, my preference would likely be to dodge a fast ball if I do not think I have the ability to catch it.
I well remember pitching to my two older brothers who could whack the tape ball we played with to a lightning speed in no time. Those lessons coached me well. Stay alert!
But sometimes you do not have time to dodge a ball nor the skill. Ugh, while I mention the words “dodge” and “ball” in the same sentence, another vivid memory appears in my mind as the last chosen on a team at school and the first one smacked with those balls. Oh, what fun, right?
Back to my sweet son. We did not expect a casual bike ride to turn into three medical facilities, surgery and great pain. It is still stupefying to consider how it happened. But it did. In the moment, I noticed I did not respond as I had before when traumatic times occurred. There was a peace. Unexplainable. Sadness gripping my heart for my son, but a calm, nonetheless.
God gave a presence of mind to consider that where we were was temporary. It was also allowed by Him and a mission.
Would we waste the brief opportunities that came our way with the people we would meet, or would we share Christ, our biggest blessing, our very life, to those around us? One shot to handle the ball and to bring God glory.
My son is growing in his faith and it was absolutely precious to see Him have to depend on God and to grow in His strength and faith in Jesus. As we read Scripture aloud and prayed in that hospital room, God did His part. The hardest thing, though, was for my son to face His enemy – the pain he was in. The only way to recovery was to walk through the pain and to make a choice to take the ball, the circumstances dealt to him, and push through. He had to choose to face his pain and get up and fight.
You see, our enemy throws sucker punches and sometimes we want to give up. Dizzy and lying on the ground, it seems impossible to get up and fight. But the only way to victory is to accept what happened and to fight. Not with the weapons of this world. It might be on our knees, reading His word or it might mean doing really hard things, but in the place of pain we have a Savior walking with us through it all, and it makes all the difference in the world.
Sometimes all you can do is hang onto Jesus’ robe and cry out. That’s ok. That is the best place to be, actually. It can be easy to grow discouraged when challenges rise in our lives, in particular multiple balls coming our direction at the same time. We don’t expect them nor appreciate them often in the moment. Unless . . . we view them as an adventure and view ourselves as being in the hands of a loving sovereign God Who is sending us on a mission. Will we accept?
Lord, help us to see You in all of life. Help us to seek You as our coach in every circumstance and to not grow weary in well doing.