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  • Writer's pictureKatie McGuire



It’s Spring. Baseball season has just started back up, and I’m instantly craving the warm weather and stadium food (someone buy me some peanuts and crackerjacks, stat!).

Baseball season, like most seasons we face in life, is full of ‘hip-hip-hoorays,’ as well as ‘gosh, darn it’s!”

You win some, you lose some.

I’m going through one of those really hard seasons right now, where my heart has been having a hard time finding joy and shouting ‘hip-hip-hooray!”

And unfortunately, this season of my life has been lasting a lot longer than a normal baseball season.

Everything hurts.

I feel like life keeps setting me up for strikeouts. Inning after inning after inning of curveball after curveball and strikeout after strikeout. The same thing. Over and over. My heart has had enough.

Every time I step up to the plate, I feel like it’s my first time at bat: I’m disoriented and unsure of how to hit the ball, let alone swing the bat.

Strike 1.

“Whoa. I was not expecting that.” I take a deep breath. “I’ve got this. I can turn things around.”

But here comes another fast pitch. Another curveball. I swing.

Strike 2.

“I was wrong. I can’t do this. How can I possibly do this? God, help me. I can’t do this alone. I need You.” A soft breeze blows across my face, the stadium goes quiet, and I hear a gentle whisper that reassures me that God has everything in control. I take another deep breath, and swing.

Strike 3. I’m out.

“I don’t get it……” I’m discouraged. Disoriented. Defeated. I’m hurting. “I thought everything was going to be okay? Why is this happening? This doesn’t make sense, God.”

I’ve been praying a lot. Praying for wisdom and understanding. I’ve been asking God for help through this rough patch. And there are days when absolutely nothing makes sense--Like the peaceful breeze, and the unexpected strike out.

Why am I back on the bench? Why did I strike out? Why can’t I hit those curveballs? And why do they always take me by surprise?

Let me tell you right now…Life is just like baseball.

There will be fast pitches, and curveballs and strikeouts. But listen up! There will also be double plays and RBI’s and home runs! There are going to be those moments that make absolutely no sense at all, that leave us defeated and feeling like we’re less than MVP’s. But those moments can actually help us become better at bat. Trust me. Because after my strikeout, I went and sat on the bench, and having a pity party by myself, I sat there and I tried to understand how God was going to use the hurt I was feeling in my heart. Then He showed me something really cool in the midst of the messy pain. And He spoke straight to my heart in such a loving and corrective way, like any great Coach would:

“How were you holding the bat?”

“How was your stance?”

“Where was your focus? Was it on the pitcher? The ball? Or somewhere else?”

“How much power was in your swing? Were you giving it your all?”

"After that first pitch, what did you learn? And did you apply what you learned?"


Of course.

It took me sitting on the bench to realize something important.

I’ve practiced all these things before...but when I’m in the midst of pain and confusion, sometimes it’s hard to keep these things in mind.

The first curveball took me by surprise, and threw me off for the next couple of pitches. I was constant in prayer through my time at bat, but it wasn’t until I completely struck out that I could hear God’s voice and I heard Him telling me what was up. I needed to have time on the bench to think things through and see His plan.

Even though I had practiced these things before, I wasn’t fully prepared for what was before me, because the moment I got my first strike, I didn’t change anything. I panicked under the pressure and didn’t better my stance, or change my grip on the bat. I didn’t fully have my focus where my focus should have been, and I didn’t swing with enough power to do anything against the ball. You see, I didn’t learn anything after that first curveball. I just continued doing things the same way with every ball thrown my way.

You see, God allows us to experience hard things so that we can grow.

We need to keep in mind that through every season, God is calling us closer to Himself. And sometimes that requires a change of heart. We may not understand why we have to strike out, but when we’re back on the bench, we begin to see how we can work through our hardships and become better because of them. Through the strikeouts and the time spent after on the bench, we can learn how to better swing when those curveballs come our way again.

God has slowly been showing me His plan. It’s not easy. It’s still a struggle. But every once in awhile, there’s another run batted in, and joy can be found in that.

You may strike out. But don’t give up. Because the Coach hasn’t given up on you. He has great plans for you! And He’s right there by your side to help you improve your game. A strike out doesn’t mean the game is over. A strikeout is just another opportunity to learn from the Coach; the One who knows the game inside and out, and wants what’s best for you.

You’re gonna be okay.

It’s gonna hurt, but you’ll be better because of it. It’s gonna take some time on the bench, but you’re gonna be okay. I fully believe it.

2 Corinthians 12:9 "My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness."



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