Thursday, November 3, 2016

A Christmas and Easter Baseball Fan

Rizzo and Heyward.  (Hey guys, I know your names now,
in time for the season to be over.)
I'm not really even anything so grand as a fair weather fan, unless you can call someone a fan who tunes in on the 5th inning of the 7th game of the World Series. 

I know the words fastball and curveball, but that is where my knowledge of pitching ends.  I had to ask Jeff and Elijah for probably the fiftieth time about the foul ball rule. (The first two are outs but after that they are just...annoyances? I mean, that is a weird rule, right?  It'd not just me, right?)   I'd never seen (or truthfully even heard of) any of the players before tonight.  But there I was was in the tenth inning, cheering and then biting my nails and then jumping up and down in front of the TV along with the rest of you. 

It's a good reminder that even someone like me, someone who watches less than one half of one baseball game per year, can get something out of it.  You  - with your season tickets,  and your drawer full of Cubs shirts, your knowledge of the rules, your little paper stats sheet, you who have not missed a single game this season  - thank you all.  Thank you for keeping it going for a long long long dry season (108 years!), so I could step into the flow of the game and feel for a couple of hours on a rainy night like I am part of something bigger than myself.

I had a meeting with the pastor relations team at my church this week.  They are a dedicated and thoughtful bunch, and we took some time to assess where we've been in the past six months, and to tentatively look ahead to where we might be going.  I've been feeling really grateful lately for those church people who understand how Church works, who keep it going even in these strange days After The Fire.  These are the season ticket holders, I thought, looking around the table this week. They do not give up, no matter how long it takes (although please dear Jesus, let it not take 108 years to rebuild from this fire, ok?).  They hang in there.  And they make the space sacred and ready to welcome anyone who comes to sing and laugh and cry and pray, even at the eleventh hour, even if just for a few moments.

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