Here’s the Scene:
Third game of the day.
Last inning of the game.
We were down by one run, with a runner on base.
My 7-year-old was battling at the plate.
I cheered for him: “Come on, Bud!” (clap, clap)
“You know what to do,” I whispered, as I usually do.
I watched as he spun the bat around, preparing for the pitch to come his way. He set. He was ready.
In my life, I don’t always feel overly prepared for the battles at the plate. Often, I feel blindsided by them. I feel like I’m swinging my bat around, just messing around. All of a sudden, a pitch comes, and I’m wildly unprepared. I drop my hands, wait too long, swing like crazy, and I’m left with either a strike or a foul ball.
As my husband would say, “That’s a terrible swing. You have a lot of work to do.”
My husband knows baseball. If he says you’re doing it wrong, then you probably are. There’s no reason to take offense to what he says. He just knows he can help you make it better, if you listen to him.
Did you get that last part? IF YOU LISTEN.
The definition for listen is: “1.give one’s attention to a sound // 2.take notice of and act on what someone says.” Listening isn’t just to hear what someone said. Listening involves ACTING on what they said! When I tell my kids to listen, I don’t want them just to hear me. I want them to do something as well!
2 Chronicles 7:14 says, “If my people, who are called by my name,
will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways,
then I will hear from heaven,
and I will forgive their sin and will heal their land.”
The part that says “seek my face” is the first definition of listen: give one’s attention to a sound. Then comes the second definition of listen: “turn from their wicked ways,” which is an action. And then God will work!
I know that I have work to do. I need to work on my swing: listen to God, make some adjustments, and then prepare for the battle at the plate. I need to seek God and LISTEN, because He definitely knows what He’s talking about when it comes to changing my heart.
Then, when the time comes, I know God will sit in the stands, cheering me on (“You know what to do.”) and watch. He’s there – close. But He’s going to let me do the battle.
My son prepared for the pitch. He’d been practicing, listening to his dad, and working on making his swing better. Now, he was in the battle, and I was cheering from the stands.
He hit the ball, and from the moment he made contact, I knew. I rose to my feet (not common when it’s cold and windy, and I was under a blanket to stay warm). I softly said, “That’s gone.”
Sure enough, that ball flew. It went far: over the fence. Home run! (His first over-the-fence.) His walk-off homerun won the game.
I screamed. I shed a few joyful tears. I hugged my son for a long time just outside the dugout , and I was so glad to see his huge smile!
God celebrates those wins with us, just as He supports us in the losses. He’s there friend, for both. So, I encourage you to seek His face and LISTEN. Make some adjustments, and then swing for the fence.