Tuesday, August 16, 2011

“Handling the Strike Out"

Every one of us has moments in our life when we strike out. These are the moments in our life when we simply fail. We loose confidence, we mess up, we swing for something and miss, or we just stand there and watch the perfect pitch or opportunity pass us by. These moments in our life seem to stick with us forever. We can all remember freshly, no matter how much time has passed, those moments in our life when we have simple struck out. We have faced the humiliation and walked defeated back to the dug out. Each of us can recall when someone has hurt us or we have hurt someone else. We have all had situations in life when we have botched something up, messed up, made bad financial or business decision, trusted the wrong person, or someone we love has died. We automatically hold on to these moments and wonder why some people adjust better than we do.

Those that follow baseball will argue who is the best hitter of all time. If we look at statics only, (not getting into the steroid era debate) we look at three of the all time homerun leaders. George Herman (Babe) Ruth in 22 seasons hit 714 homeruns but also had 1330 strike outs. Hank Aaron in 23 seasons hit 755 homeruns with 1383 strike outs, and Barry Bonds 762 homeruns with 1539 strike outs. If you notice these hitters struck out about twice a many times than hit homeruns. What made them great was not their homeruns but how they overcame striking out. These great hitters did not allow the strike out to define who they were as a batter; if they did they would have never made it out of the minor leagues. When they stuck out, they adjusted their swing, reinstalled their confidence, and with great anticipation of success and enthusiasm stepped back into the batters box. They not once asked to be taken out of the game because of a strike out. They understand that slumps are just part of the game. When we look at baseball any great player will have a .300 battering average. A .300 batting average will get you into the Hall of Fame. Baseball is a game where greatness is defined by someone failing only 7 out of 10 times. In baseball like in life, you may fail more times than you succeed.

We all have failures in life, it is just apart of living. What is important is how we handle those strikeout moments. We have all made bad decisions, said the wrong thing, believed the wrong person, must trust in those who are not trust worthy, and let both ourselves and others down. Jesus’ own disciples struck out on him when he needed them most. Sometime in our prayers to God during our strike out moments we may be just asking the wrong question. We pray for God to deliver us, restore us, help us, and save us. These are great prayers however instead of simply asking God to rescue us; we may need to ask God what WE can do the next time we are in the batters box. We need to explore and be open to new ways God can help us adjust our swing, reinstall our confidence, and encourage us to get back in the game. Staying on the bench is not really an option. Just something to think about next time we strike out..
Peace & Love,

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