Baseball and Life: Ready Every Day
If you are a baseball fan and you ever go through Amarillo, Texas, you must stop at the Home Plate Diner – four large rooms of baseball pictures, pennants, and memorabilia, plus above average food. I was there last week, and my attention was drawn to an old, worn pennant for the St. Louis Browns. In my baseball saturated childhood, the Browns were the worst team in major league baseball, finishing in last place every year. However, two of my favorite players were on that team. Ned Garver was a twenty game winning pitcher, no small fete on a team that lost 100 games in a season; and since I too was a Shortstop, I loved Marty “Slats” Marion, the Browns’ shortstop, who later in life purchased my hometown Houston Buffs, of the Texas League. Somewhere in my childhood, the Browns moved to Baltimore, became the Orioles, started winning, and lost my favor. From these lovable losers, I not only learned the joy of the game, win or lose, I also learned a lesson in life. Satchel Paige, who played for the Browns until he was 47 years old, once said, “You win a few, you lose a few. Some get rained out. But you got to dress for all of them.” Translated into a life lesson, this meant get up and go to work every day, whether you feel like it or not, and whether the day’s possibilities look bright or dim. Later, I learned this was a biblical lifestyle. The writer of Ecclesiastes wrote, “I saw that there is nothing better for men than that they should be happy in their work, for that is what they are here for” (Ecclesiastes 3:22). Proverbs states, “hard work returns many blessings” (Proverbs 12:14). The Apostle Paul wrote, “Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord” (Colossians 3:23, NIV). Baseball and life! Not a bad combination!