Saturday, October 30, 2010

Pitching For The Hiroshima Carp

We all have big dreams. With our God-given talents and abilities we build our dreams with the sky-is-the-limits attitude. And then, life happens.

A young baseball player, a pitcher by skill, charting his course to baseball success. Each step along the way building upon the last and his future seems to whisper victory. And then a rotator cuff injury. And then, a shot in the spotlight . . . pulled in to cover for an injured Major League player goes terribly - a horrible first impression given to the major leagues when the green hopeful crumbles under the big lights.

And then worse.

"Hey man, I heard you left the country. What are you up to these days?"

"Uh. still playing ball. Yeh, I'm playing with the Hiroshima Carp."

"The what? chuckle chuckle. You're playing for the WHO??????"

"I know, I know. looking down at his sneakers Yeh, me and my family we moved to Japan. I'm playing for the Hiroshima Carp."

That's rough. Not what a "wanna be" superstar wants to admit. I'm playing for a Japaneese team - the Carp team. Do you know Carp? Are you kidding? There is nothing grand about Carp. It's not powerful like a viking or a giant or a tiger.

And yet, tonight as I watch the World Series, a confident Colby Lewis shoots a steel glare at the batter, and winds up his arm ready to unleash a bullet.

When asked if he was nervous about the World Series, Colby says, "No. Uprooting my family and moving to Japan for me to play for the Carp? That scared me. This does not scare me."

You see, that detour that hurt his ego, that detour that was so unplanned, embarrassing, degrading, upsetting, which he could have seen as an impossibility worthy of scrapping a career . . . actually turned out to be the detour that he needed. The additional training, the focus, the redirection of playing for the Carp made him a better player . . . which he admits . . .and today . . . he is a champion with his team playing in the World Series.

Has your path ever taken a detour? Do you have a black eye from a bad experience in the major leagues of life? Are you down and out? Are you alone in the dugout with your cap in your hand scanning the empty seats littered with empty paper cups wondering the fate of your big dreams after what's just happened?

Maybe God's got you pitching for the Carp right now on a detour that is training you up for the big leagues. You see, in God's training no effort goes wasted. He is raising you up to be better than you ever knew.

Keep pitching. Even if it's for the Carp for a while.