By Steven Scheid
I remember a game we played as sixth graders. It was a nonconventional form of baseball. Mr. Johnson would slow pitch a racket ball to each “batter”. A tennis racket was used as a bat; it was difficult to swing and miss. The ball generally sailed into the far-away outfield. It appeared anyone could make one of these heroic flights happen.
But it did not happen for everyone. I remember one youngster who struggled. Mr. Johnson patiently helped them place both hands firmly on the racket handle. He showed them how to turn the racket up just a bit to make the ball sail or turn it down to make a wicked ground ball. The next swing went nowhere. Mr. Johnson patiently reminded him to “Keep your eye on the ball.”
The whole game was simple enough. It was set for success but only if they kept their eye on the ball.
I wonder in my travels, conversations and worship with churches across the nation if we have forgotten the ball. Our goal is relationship with Christ. Salvation is simple enough if we stay in growing relationship with the Savior. Our Lord will convict, teach and comfort. Jesus paid the immeasurable price for sin. God will help us move onward to perfection through relationship.
Scouting volunteers hold diverse views. The one that stands in the center, no matter the angle from which we see, is Jesus Christ. Can’t we keep our eye on the prize? If we prize relationship with Christ above all else, we cannot miss the ball.
Swing for the fences with your eye fixed on Christ alone. Serve as though you are the only one serving. Share grace as large as the grace given you and know that Christ will judge the quick and the dead.
You don’t have to.
Steven Scheid, director of the Center for Scouting Ministries
General Commission on UM Men