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Wednesday, May 30, 2007

Worthy of the Shirt

"When my heart was embittered and I was pierced within, then I was senseless and ignorant, I was like a beast before You. Nevertheless I am continually with You; You have taken hold of my right hand. With Your counsel You will guide me, and afterward receive me to glory."
Psalm 73:21 NASB

This entire 73rd Psalm of Asaph has been on my heart all month. Because it kept coming up continually, I felt the Lord was leading me to write on it but I was lacking meaningful application. All it took to fix that was a Little League Baseball Game, a semi-illegal pitcher for the opposing team, and one mad Preacher's Wife.

Let me set this one up for you. We are currently in post-season play in a local County Tournament. The eligible teams are not All-Stars but ball clubs who have played together all season long. We have absolutely clobbered this particular team each time we have played thus far. When we arrived at the game expecting the same kids, we discovered two players had been added from a Select Travel Team. The new pitcher looks like Goliath and, giving credit where it is due, could flat out sling a baseball. Dad did not trust his boy to the coaching staff but instead gave pitching signals from behind the home plate fence. To make sure the whole family was involved in giving this child the star treatment, when he left the field, instead of sitting in the dugout with the 'regular' players, he sat in a lawn chair while his mother fanned him like the King of Siam.

Our boys could not hit a thing off this kid. His size was as intimidating as his pitching. The farther along the game went, the madder our parents got. A protest was filed before the game began but apparently the other team had snuck this kid under everyone's radar in the last two games of season play to make him eligible for the tournaments.

This is where I get to tell you how wonderful The Preacher is :) He is the model of grace under pressure and of letting the Lord fight your battles. He wasn't any happier about the situation than I was but he continued exchanging pleasantries with the umpire and other coaches while I sat with a scowl on my face the whole game. He came to the fence and said, "Why don't you smile a little bit?" I noticed he had on his shirt with our church's name on it. I said, "Because I am mad, I don't want to, and that is exactly why I don't wear The Church Shirt to ballgames." And I should have been sufficiently ashamed of myself right then. But it got a wee bit worse.

After the game, I was standing with a group of friends and my little boy who was devastated over the loss. Out of nowhere and for no explainable reason, one of the other team's Moms came up and said, 'Yay..we did it! Did ya'll see that score?? 7 - to - 1 !'

Oh, I know she didn't.

I literally let my jaw drop to the ground and I'm telling you the, "I guess you CAN finally win IF YOU CHEAT!!" remark was about to roll off my tongue when this little voice said, "Remember yourself, Lisa. Remember The Name." Ouch.

Which takes me back to the part of the verse above that talks about 'being a beast before You'. I almost acted like an idiot tonight and was close enough that I would have been embarrassed had I been wearing my church's t-shirt. If I have to worry about shaming The Name by how I act at the ballfield I do believe I need to stay home.

So tell me, am I alone in this? Does how you act ever conflict with The Name you profess? Are you afraid to wear the shirt? To put the Fish on your car? Let's be mindful of our testimony, Girls. We may be the only Jesus some people ever see. The Lord really humbled me but thankfully, He promises to take my hand and guide me to Proverbs 31 behavior. Even better than that, if I have a stroke at the ballfield from having to keep my big mouth shut, He promises to receive me to Glory. However, I can think of other ways I'd rather go out and hopefully when I do, I'll leave this world proudly wearing The T-Shirt.

I would love a visit from you at my personal blog, The Preacher's Wife.

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Blogger Deborah said...

Oh Lisa, I blown it more then once myself, How I have regretted it afterwards. You make it easy to get up dust yourself off and walk on thank you so much for your honesty. love me

May 30, 2007 at 2:34 AM  
Blogger Denise said...

Thanks for this wonderful post.

May 30, 2007 at 8:48 AM  
Blogger Mindy said...

Girl, how many times has this been my life?
McKaig temper--preacher's wife -- church shirts (This girl is God's princess from Women of Faith t-shirts) not a good combo sometimes.

Although - the tshirts do help to remind me to be what the name implies ALL of the time.
too funny. sad about the cheating but you held your composure and coming from someone who KNOWS the way these types of ballgames go -- that is something to be proud of.
YOU listened to HIS voice!
Way to go!

May 30, 2007 at 9:26 AM  
Blogger RealEstateGirl said...

Lisa, what powerful insight. I usually let my mouth get the better of me. My temper and defender of any injustice are the hardest to control.

I'm proud of you. HE is proud of you, and I know Preacher is proud of you too.

May 30, 2007 at 9:31 AM  
Blogger Darlene said...

Wow, no hair pulling or anything! Good for you Lisa today you're able to use the word "almost" today, when many of us wish that we could take back words that we said. You're like a mother bear with her cubs--of course that's a "Christian" mother bear! ~ wink.

May 30, 2007 at 9:43 AM  
Anonymous Lynn Donovan said...

Hi Lisa,

I love to sit with you and have a cup of coffee. I delight in the many way God reveals Himself and His ways in your daily life. I am tickled you find Him often at the Little League ball field. Neat!!

May 30, 2007 at 10:50 AM  
Anonymous Carrie said...

You did great keeping your cool. That is a testimony in itself. The "t-shirt" should be passed out to everyone entering the park....hopefully it would have the same effect on everyone. I'm liking that idea!!! Hubby was there, I heard all about it when he got home. He was as upset as you, and we didn't have a kid out there. I don't like him either, he's like your hubby, calm, cool & collective. It must be a girl thang!!

May 30, 2007 at 11:55 AM  
Blogger Julie said...

Hi Lisa,
I enjoyed your post. There must be something in the air, because I posted about the same thing today.

May 30, 2007 at 12:07 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I too am proud of you!! Before I was a mother, I didn't fully understand the whole 'taking up for your kids' thing. Of course, I have been upset at games where I knew children that were playing, but now I can put myself in the position of a mother whose child is out there. I will do good to hold my tounge when my time comes! and I know exactly what you mean about wearing the 'shirt'! As Christians wheather or not we physically have it on or not, we are Always wearing the shrit! Sometimes my shrit needs some extra care, i.e. ironing, stain removing and more times than not washing. I just think maybe we (and I really mean I) forget to hang it up to dry and tend to toss it in the dryer where it sometimes shrinks or stays wrinkled! Lets just pray that I keep all my "laundry" in order! Thank you for sharing!

May 30, 2007 at 2:52 PM  
Blogger Linda said...

Oh are you kidding me? Have I ever done this kind of thing? Yep. Oh it feels awful when you cave in. Along these lines, Big Mama has a link to a post where an unbeliever writes about believers' behavior around her ... very thought provoking. thanks for this relevant post.

May 30, 2007 at 6:11 PM  
Anonymous tammy said...

I knew something was wrong when I got to my car and I had 5 missed calls and 4 of them was from you. I was already upset about the situation because it had happened to our other Ider team on Friday night. That saying "if they can live with it, we can too" is hard to swallow when something like this happens. It has been a big topic around our house. What is "legal" is not always right. I am proud to call you my preachers wife and my friend.

May 30, 2007 at 6:36 PM  
Blogger Laurel Wreath said...

Ummm we won't talk about football games, where every parent thinks their child is the greatest to every graces the field. The Lord had (made) me have jaw surgery the first year of them playing FOR A REASON! Now I know what to expect and how NOT to react.

Great post. I love your heart in this one.

May 30, 2007 at 8:57 PM  
Blogger Gretchen said...

Oh, Lisa, I was just speaking to a friend of mine about the cornundrum I feel when deciding whether or not to put a "fish" on my car. I want to be a Christian, and don't want to be a hypocrite, but it seems I'm just going to be an aware hypocrite who is also blessed enough to be saved by grace. Thank you for the wake up call. The world--our unsaved friends in particular--is watching.


May 30, 2007 at 9:44 PM  
Blogger eph2810 said...

Lisa, you always make me smile sharing your life applications of Scripture. Oh, yes, have I been there - not on the ball-field, but in the work force...not as of lately, but that is only due to His intervention.

Thank you so much for sharing this up-lifting post. I hope that I will, with His continued help, make Him proud until I enter into glory...

Blessings to you and yours.

May 31, 2007 at 2:16 AM  
Blogger Chris said...

Another great post Lisa! This is such a hard one for us parents. I have been there too!

May 31, 2007 at 11:19 AM  

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