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Lessons from the baseball field

By Phillip Hines

Baseball season is in full swing, and the Braves are doing pretty good this year!  

Watching a player argue with an umpire over a call the other night, I was reminded of two stories.

In one game, the batter was a great big fellow, and the catcher was also very large.  The umpire was a very small man. When the first ball was thrown, the small umpire called out, “Strike one!” The big batter turned around and gave the small umpire a dirty look. The second ball came, and the umpire called, “Ball one!” The big catcher turned and glared at the umpire.  

When the next ball was tossed, the umpire called out, “Two!” Both the catcher and the batter turned, looked at the umpire and said, “Two what?”  

The umpire replied, “Too close to call!”

In the other game, you had somewhat the same scenario. The batter was a big ball player, and the umpire was a little guy. The ball came across the plate at 96 miles per hour. The little umpire called out, “Strike one!” The huge batter turned and looked angrily at the umpire and said, “What do you mean?”  

The umpire was shaken and concerned about his well-being. He cried out, “I meant ball!”

We often find ourselves in that predicament in life. It seems as though we constantly strive to please the world. With one person, it is easy to say, “Yes!” and with another person, it is easy to say “Yes!” – but when in the presence of both, it is difficult to be honest and open about our convictions. 

Friends, Jesus said in Matthew 6:24, “No one can serve two masters; for either he will hate the one and love the other or else he will be loyal to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve God and mammon.”

The choice is simple. We either please the world or we please God!

 

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