Tuesday, June 30, 2009

At Bat With the Lord

What a night. It was the first game in the little league world series. We were down by 3 and Tim was up to bat. My stomach turned for him as he approached home plate. Tim had been in a slump for some time. Batting practice was always a success, but during games he would just freeze up. He said he couldn't get the thought of losing for his team our of his head. The pressure was too much and Tim would either strike out or walk every time. The ball had not met the bat during a game - not once in a very long time.

During batting practice, Tim would hit pop flies, grounders and line drives. I would watch him bat, sometimes talking him through the pitch. I would make jokes, remind him to watch the ball or tell him to lighten up. It seemed to help.

So, tonight when it was Tim's turn at bat, I decided to leave my usual place sitting in the outfield. I walked up behind home plate and gave my boy some of those reminders. His first swing was a miss, so I told him to relax. Stepping out of the batters box, he turned and smiled - letting me know he knew I was there. After two balls and my cheers for watching the ball, there came the perfect pitch. Tim hit a line drive which bounced past the pitcher and over the second basemen. Finally, my boy was out of his batting slump. Finally, he hit the ball without worry.

After the game, I asked Tim what was so different about this time at bat. He was relaxed and confident up at the plate - I asked him why and expected him to say the cheers were a good distraction, no outs on the board made him relaxed or it was one of the last games so he gave it his all. However, that wasn't it. He told me he was ready to hit the ball because he sat in the dugout and prayed about it. He asked God to ease his worry and allow him to relax up at bat. He prayed that he would just go out there and hit the ball.

There I was thinking Tim was using some sort of strategic baseball technique or allowing the cheers from the stands to help him... When all along it was his faith in God and allowing himself to be led by the Lord. So, while Tim took the time to turn to the Lord in his time of need, I learned I should never sell my son short at bat, by the dugout or in his heart.

Could a mom be any more proud of her son coming out of his hitting slump?
~Great game tonight, Tim, and great batting!

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Summer Camp '09

My boy is at camp this week. We dropped him off Sunday afternoon. We will see him Friday evening when we meet up with him at "family campfire." I love attending this event. After 6 days of missing my first born, 6 evenings at the dinner table with his place left empty, and 6 nights of tucking in the girls and walking past his dark bedroom, I am thrilled to see Tim from across the campfire.

And, yes, I go right up to my boy and give him a big, fat hug and kiss! It's the only time I get to without Tim telling me I am embarrassing him to death.