THE Complete Game

The Complete Game

  • March 6-Giving of Yourself

    March 6-Giving of Yourself

    Scripture Lesson: 1Timothy 1:1-2

    The Veterans’ Committee on this date in 2001 elects Bill Mazeroski to the Hall of Fame. The Pirates second baseman was a great defensive player and is probably best known for the walk-off HR in game seven of the 1960 World Series against the Yankees. Now Mazeroski has taken Neil Walker current Pittsburgh second baseman under his wing and has worked with him on his defense. Walker said,”Maz was so gracious with his time in working with me on the finer points, especially turning the double play. It was important to me to take my defensive game to the next level in Spring Training this year and Maz was an instrumental in my development.”

    Timothy would be the young minister that Paul took under his wing to help develop. He calls Timothy in our Scripture lesson, “my true son in the faith”. The letters of 1st and 2nd Timothy are written to help guide the young minister to reach his potential for the Kingdom. Just like Maz working with Neil Walker produced several web gems in 2011, Paul working with Timothy helped to produce a young developing minister for the Gospel. It is important for those of us who have experience in life to be willing to pass that along. It means so much to someone when we invest our time in them. Paul did it, Maz did it, and we need to do it! Giving of ourselves can make a Kingdom difference in the life of him/her.

    1. Why is it important to give of ourselves to others?
    2. Who is someone we need to reach out to invest in their life?
    3. Thank God for those who have made a Kingdom difference in our life.

    Giving of ourselves, sounds like something Jesus would do!

  • March 5-Fiery Leader

    March 5-Fiery Leader

    Scripture Lesson: Daniel 3:13-30

    On this date in 1996 Earl Weaver is elected to the Hall of Fame by the Veterans’ Committee. Weaver spent 17 seasons as manager for the Baltimore Orioles. He was known for his fiery demeanor and for the way he always stood up for his players. Weaver was known to get in fiery arguments with umpires. Weaver was ejected 91 times in the regular season.

    Today’s Scripture passage is about a group of fiery leaders, Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego. These three men would not bow down and worship the huge statue of King Nebuchadnezzar. The penalty for not doing so was to be tossed in the fiery furnace. A furnace so hot the people who put the three into the furnace died. When the King looked in the furnace he saw 4 people instead of three. He called for the three to come out of the furnace and they did without even one singed hair. Because of their faith and the protection of God, the King praised God.

    1. How do we respond when our faith comes under fire?
    2. Think about a time it was hard to stand up for your faith.
    3. What can we learn from the faith of Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego?

    Our faith can withstand anything when we choose to stand with God!

  • March 4-Friendship

    March 4-Friendship

    Scripture Lesson: Proverbs 18:24

    On this date in 1984 the Special Veterans’ Committee elects Pee Wee Reese to the Hall of Fame. Reese was known as an outstanding defensive player and the captain of the great Brooklyn Dodger teams of the 1940’s and 50’s. His friendship with Jackie Robinson helped Robinson’s acceptance in baseball. In May 1947 during a game in Cincinnati, with Robinson facing death threats and taunts of racial hecklers, Reese goes out of his way to support Robinson by walking over from short to second and putting his arm around his teammate’s shoulder. This simple gesture challenged prejudice and created a powerful and enduring friendship.

    Our Scripture lesson from Proverbs talks about a friend that is closer than a brother. What a blessing from God to have friends like that. I am blessed to have a small group of friends that I know that I could call on at any time. We have been there for each other for many years, as a matter of fact over 23 years. We have walked with each other through some very difficult times and I feel closer to these men than I do anyone outside my immediate family. The love of these friends is something very special. It is nice to be able to say…thank you Dead Preachers’ Society for being that kind of friends.

    1. Who are your closest friends?
    2. What does it take to have the kind of friends the writer of Proverbs is writing about?
    3. Thank God for those friends right now.

    The greatest gift you can give those close friends in your life is yourself!

  • March 3- Self Control

    March 3- Self Control

    Scripture Lesson: Proverbs 25:28

    In a 2008 Spring Training Game, Noah Lowery of the Giants throws 24 pitches before a batter swings in the Giants loss to the Rangers. The 28 year old right hander who goes through the order once without recording an official at bat, does so with a combination of walks and sacrifice flies and issues 9 walks to the first 12 batters he faces. I’d say a pretty tough control day!

    The writer of Proverbs wants us to see that if we lack self-control we will be like a city whose walls are broken down. The city walls in those days offered protection from hostile forces, without the walls the city could have been easily over run. When we lack self-control we have no defense against the enemy who wants nothing more than to see us fall, Satan. Without self-control there is no way to fight off the temptations that come to our lives and we will be easily over run by Satan and his forces of evil. Without self-control we can never win the battle of temptation!

    1. Why is self-control so important in our Christian lives?
    2. How does self-control help us defeat Satan?
    3. How can the lack of self-control bring broken lives?

    The closer we are to Christ and the more we walk with Him, the more self-control we will possess.

  • March 2-Short Name, Short Verse

    March 2-Short Name, Short Verse

    Scripture Lesson: John 11:35

    Today is the birthday of Hall of Famer Mel Ott. In his 22 year career all with the New York Giants, Ott hit 511 HRs, scored 1859 runs, and drove in 1860 runs. Ott said,”Every time I sign a ball and there have been thousands, I thank my lucky stars that I wasn’t named Coveleski, Wambsgnass, or Peckinpaugh.”
    Today’s Scripture lesson is the shortest verse in all of Scripture, “Jesus wept”. I can remember we had to learn a verse of Scripture for RA’s and we all learned this verse. Jesus’ friend Lazarus had died. He saw how upset both Martha and Mary his sisters were and Jesus who loved His friend wept. Have you ever lost someone close to you? It is not easy to have a loved one die for us and it was not easy for Jesus to have a loved one die either. Jesus loves each of us with that kind of love. So this shortest of all verses in the Bible is packed full of love!

    1. Thank Jesus for loving you with a deep caring love.
    2. How best can we return that kind of love to Him?
    3. Why is this verse so packed with love?

    Shortest name, shortest verse both packed with a lot of power!

  • March 1-No Difference

    March 1-No Difference

    Scripture Lesson: Galatians 3:26-27

    On this date in 1947 Bill Veeck sets up his Spring Training in Arizona for the Cleveland Indians. He did so in anticipation of signing the Indians first black player and because of the relatively tolerant racial climate in Arizona. During the season Veeck signs the American League’s first black player Larry Doby and he trains at the Arizona camp.

    Paul writes to the Galatians that there is no difference in believers. In Christ there is no Jew or Greek, slave or free, male or female, all are one in Christ Jesus. Up until Jackie Robinson broke the color barrier in baseball, some of the best players to ever play the game never got to play in the major leagues. Some of those who did get to play had past their prime. In Jesus’ eyes all are the same. I like we are all part of the same family when we become believers, God’s family. There is no room in the heart of a believer for any prejudice at all toward any one. I like the song I learned at an early age, “Jesus Loves the Little Children”. “Red, and yellow, black and white they are precious in His sight. Jesus loves the little children of the world.” Our call is to do the very same thing!

    1. What does it mean to you that we are one in Christ Jesus?
    2. Have you ever had someone show prejudice towards you? How did it make you feel?
    3. What does it mean to you to a part of the family of God?

    We are all one in Christ Jesus, praise be to God!

  • February 28-Kindness

    February 28-Kindness

    Scripture Lesson: Ephesians 4:32

    Today is the birthday of former Atlanta Brave Rufino Linares. Unless you were a fan of the Braves in the early 80’s you probably never heard of Linares. He was a reserve outfielder who always had a smile on his face. I was visiting Atlanta with a church group in 1984. Lineras threw a ball into the stands during batting practice for the fans and I was fortunate to catch the ball. I yelled thank you to him and he smiled and waved. I will never forget that act of kindness and so will the little boy to whom I was able to give the ball.

    Paul in his writing to the church at Ephesus reminds the church that they need to be kind and compassionate to one another. It only takes a few seconds to do something kind for someone else. It could be as simple as opening a door for someone, smiling at a perfect stranger, or saying a kind word to someone who might just need to hear one. Kindness is something each of us can do for someone else. Kindness is shown by someone with a loving caring heart. That perfectly describes the heart of Jesus. For us to be more kind we need to be more like Jesus. Just think of all the times the Scripture teaches us about acts of kindness done by the Master.

    1. What can you do to show kindness to someone today?
    2. How is showing kindness Christ like?
    3. When we do a ransom act of kindness how does it make the person feel we do that for and how do we feel?

    Being kind means giving a little of ourselves to someone else, isn’t that what Jesus does for us?

  • February 27-Be Like Christ

    February 27-Be Like Christ

    Scripture Lesson: Philippians 4:5-6

    Today is the birthday of Twins center fielder Denard Span. The verses today are Denard’s favorite New Testament verses. His testimony is found in the FCA Baseball New Testament. These verses remind Denard to rest in the peace of God and find strength for his heart and mind in Christ. Span says,” Nothing deterred Jesus from what he believed in. It’s hard to do that because you’re outnumbered. It might be easy to get talked out of what you stand for. Everyone’s going to fall short in some ways, but I still want to be like Him.”

    What great words of faith in our Scripture passage today! Paul is telling us to rejoice always, God is near. We aren’t to be anxious about anything, we just need to pray and bring it to God. God’s peace will guard our hearts and minds in Jesus. To be like Jesus we have to have the faith of Jesus. We need a faith that trusts God and allows us to give our cares and concerns to Him. Sometimes it is not easy to live anxiety free . This is not an easy time to live with all that is going on in the world. But we serve a God who will always have our backs, He will always be there for us! We can rely on Him.

    1. Why is it important to always rejoice?
    2. How does it make you feel to know that the Lord is always near?
    3. Why do we present our cares and concerns to God in prayer and after amen pick them right up and carry them with us?

    Paul meant these words to reassure us this day that God loves us , can bring us joy in all circumstances and is just waiting for us to bring our cares and concerns to Him. Praise His name!

  • February 26-A Great Save

    February 26-A Great Save

    Scripture Lesson: Acts 16:16-34

    Today is the birthday of JT Snow. Known primarily as a great fielding first baseman, Snow made one of the games’ great saves in the 2002 World Series. As Snow was scoring after a single by Kenny Loftin in game five, he swooped up by the back of the jacket and carried off 3 year old bat boy Darren Baker. The young bat boy and son of Giants manager Dusty Baker was at home to collect Loftin’s bat before the play was over. This touching moment could have been ended much different. After this incident Commissioner Bud Selig required all bat boys to be a t least 14 years of age.

    Our Scripture lesson today is about another save that did not take place on the pitching mound. Paul and Silas were imprisoned falsely in Philippi. In the center of the prison reserved for the worst criminals, feet in stocks, Paul and Silas were singing praises to God. An earthquake came and opened all the cell doors. The jailer seeing the doors opened was ready to kill himself, Paul saved him by saying the prisoners were all there. That is the first save, the second save of the evening was when Paul and Silas witnessed to the jailer and his family and they all gave their lives to Jesus, believing on Him. I would say that is one great doubleheader save!

    1. Is there someone today in your life who needs to hear about the saving power of Jesus Christ?
    2. When is the last time we shared our faith?
    3. Would you be willing to pray that God would help you this day be a witness for Him?

    Isn’t it great we serve the God of the save?

  • February 25-Believes

    February 25-Believes

    Scripture Lesson: John 20:24-29

    Today is the birthday of former Chicago Cub player and broadcaster, Ron Santo. Santo loved the Cubs and always believed in them to win. One could hear the joy in his voice as a broadcaster when they won and the sadness when the Cubs lost. Andy McPhail then cubs President said of Santo, “Very few players are so closely connected with a franchise as Ron Sasnto is to the Cubs. His extraordinary playing career, his rabid following as a broadcaster, and his many charitable endeavors for the Chicago Land area makes his contributions to this franchise unique and special.” Santo always believed in the Cubs, right up until his death in December 2010.

    In today’s Scripture lesson, Thomas doubts the resurrection of Jesus actually took place. He said he would only believe if he saw the places where the nails went into Jesus’ hands and feet. When Jesus appeared again to the disciples and Thomas was there, Jesus invited Thomas to place his fingers in the scars. Jesus wanted Thomas to stop doubting and to begin to believe. Jesus said, “Blessed are those who have not seen and yet have believed.” Too many times we doubt God and his ability to act on our behalf. We don’t rely upon His promises and His Word. It is time to believe no matter what the world throws at us.

    1. What was the last time our faith was like Thomas’ faith?
    2. How can we live our lives like we believe in God and His promises?
    3. How do we show the Master we believe?

    Jesus said we are blessed if we believe. Let’s live our lives each day like we believe in Him and His Word.

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