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Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Pitchers and Catchers Report

Spring Training is a metaphor.
While there are no doubts that some baseball teams are better than others, in Spring Training everyone is still even. No one has won a game and no one has lost a game. In Spring Training it is time to refocus and work hard. It is a time of hope because every year there are some teams which surprise. Every year someone is much better than expected. Every year there is hope that this is the year that we do it!

Spring Training is a time to learn to play together. No matter how hard you work on your own, it takes a team to win. Meshing my skill set with your skill set allows us to achieve more. Interdependence is a reality and we need to live in the real world.

Spring Training is a time to focus on fundamentals. One of the most amazing truths about baseball is this: no matter how long you have played you still need to go back and practice the fundamentals. The foundation of our life also requires constant attention. Sometimes ego makes us ignore the basics because it is 'the basics' and we want more. In the spiritual life we are all beginners!

Lastly, Spring Training is SPRING! Spring and Lent, Spring and Easter, Spring and New Life. The words just go together. So now is a time to rekindle hope, to refocus on making the main thing the main thing, to renew our working relationships in concert with one another and a time to commit to achieving our ultimate goal (union with God and each other forever).

Even people who do not care about baseball can care about the metaphor. The metaphor of baseball provides us with an insight into life. We "play the game" of life and even if we are deadly serious about playing, we still need to enjoy it. Thirty teams start the season, only one team wins. Play to win, but even if you lose enjoy the game. You can build characater in disappointment just as you can in success. Players get hurt and careers end suddenly. Never forget how fragile it all is. Never take anything for granted. Today may be your last chance to "run and hit and throw" (whatever you do).
Before every game say a prayer of thanksgiving: for the sun, for the birds, for the other players and for the chance to be on the field. What ever your "field" is.....
Play ball!

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