A couple of weekends ago, I accompanied my 14 year old granddaughter to a softball tournament in Crowley, TX. I enjoy watching kids compete in a wholesome way and sometimes, even more, watching their parents and fans. I happened to view a game that was being played by a multi-racial, very down-to-earth team. Their parents and fans were terrific. Me, being a product of a blue-collar family, fit right in with the crowd. The game got down to the bottom half of the final inning with the game tied, two outs, and a runner on base. Up stepped a young, short, chubby girl who had the sloppiest uniform (shirt tail half in and half out, one sock up and the other down, pants dirty, shoes smudged…candidly, nothing was neat). My immediate reaction was to feel sorry for her. She was being placed in a situation where she needed to be successful at the plate, and I didn’t think it was possible. She fouled off a couple of pitches, now with two strikes. The next pitch, something majestic happened. She swung her bat and hit the ball to left field. I thought that the left fielder was going to catch it; however, the ball kept carrying over the fence. I jumped up like the rest of the crowd, screaming at the top of my lungs. What just happened?! She hit a walk off homerun! You gotta be kiddin’ me! Guess what? That young lady will never forget what happened that moment in her life. Her family, team, and fans were still celebrating when I left the field.
I hit a different type walk off homerun when I was thirteen years of age. The preacher at my church threw a fastball right down the middle of the plate by stating, “Whoever calls upon the name of the Lord will be saved” (Romans 10:13). I felt the conviction and tugging of God Himself to respond to the pitch and I did. In my case, I walked down the aisle of that church to give my heart and life to Him. Romans 10:9&10 says it this way, “9 If you declare with your mouth, “Jesus is Lord,” and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. 10 For it is with your heart that you believe and are justified, and it is with your mouth that you profess your faith and are saved.” That very moment, I hit a walk off homerun declaring my home was heaven and that very day I started the run towards eternal life.
1 Peter 1:3-5, describes my walk off homerun beautifully, “3 Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! In his great mercy he has given us new birth into a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, 4 and into an inheritance that can never perish, spoil or fade. This inheritance is kept in heaven for you, 5 who through faith are shielded by God’s power until the coming of the salvation that is ready to be revealed in the last time.” I walked “into an inheritance that can never perish, spoil or fade. This inheritance is kept in heaven for (me).”
The same walk off homerun experience is available to you once you invite Jesus into your heart!
Some of us have experienced our own walk off homerun yet seem to be buried in the cares of this world. 1 Peter 1:6 explains, “6 In all this you greatly rejoice, though now for a little while you may have had to suffer grief in all kinds of trials. 7 These have come so that the proven genuineness of your faith—of greater worth than gold, which perishes even though refined by fire—may result in praise, glory and honor when Jesus Christ is revealed.” Peter later explains what you need to do in 5:6&7, “6 Humble yourselves, therefore, under God’s mighty hand, that he may lift you up in due time. 7 Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you.”
God wants us to celebrate our “walk off homerun” every day for eternity.