THE Complete Game

The Complete Game

  • July 23-Unusual

    July 23-Unusual

    Scripture Lesson: 1 Kings 6:1-7

    On this date in 1975 at Three Rivers Stadium, Frank Taveras is picked off first base in an unusual play. After getting a big lead, to try to get a good jump on a sacrifice bunt, the Pirate shortstop is picked off when the catcher throws the ball to first base with the Phillies right fielder Jay Johnstone covering first base to complete the 2-9 play.

    Today’s Scripture lesson is another unusual event. Elisha and some of the prophets were going down by the Jordan River to cut some trees. As one of them was cutting down a tree the axhead flew off the handle and into the river sinking to the bottom. The lumberjack was horrified because he had borrowed the ax. Elisha asked where it went into the river. He then cut a stick and threw it into the river at the spot where the ax went into the water. The iron axhead floated to the top and the man reached out and got it. The man who had borrowed the ax must have felt relieved and grateful.

    1. Describe a time God came through for you when you needed Him the most.

    2. How did it make you feel?

    3. Why is it important to be ready to help someone in need?

    God cares for us by being there for us when we need Him. He often sends people to help us when we need the help. We should always be ready to be used by God to help others even in unusual circumstances.

  • July 22-Being a Father

    July 22-Being a Father

    Scripture Lesson: 1 Thessalonians 2:11-12

    On this date in 1966 the Mets left fielder learns he is a new dad when the Dodger Stadium scoreboard relays the message, “Congratulations Ron Swoboda. Your new son is being born tomorrow morning.” Cecilia Swoboda gave birth to Chipper, the couples’ first child at 1:05 am Eastern Standard Time making it the next day on the west coast.

    Paul is writing to the Thessalonians and telling them how he treated them, just like a father treats his children. Paul encouraged, comforted, and urged them to live lives worthy of God who calls us to heaven. All of his actions to the Thessalonians came from his love for them. One of the greatest gifts a man can be given is to be a father. With that great blessing comes a great responsibility to not only love his children like God loves us, but also to live a Christ like example of encouraging, comforting, and urging his children to live lives worthy of God.

    1. If you are a father today, have you lived up to what a Godly father should do? Why or why not?

    2. If you are a son or daughter, have you followed your father’s direction and received his love? Why or why not?

    3. Why is it important to love our children like our Heavenly Father loves us and for us as children to love our fathers like God loves us?

    Loving your children means wanting the very best for them, that is how our Heavenly Father loves each of us!

  • July 21-A Good Day

    July 21-A Good Day

    Scripture Lesson: Genesis 1:31

    On this date in 1946 Lew Fick sets a professional baseball record when he collects nine straight hits in a single game, before grounding out in the 19th inning opener against Memphis. The Little Rock Traveler AA outfielder will get three more hits in the night cap finishing the doubleheader 12 for 13.

    Our Scripture lesson form Genesis today completes creation. God had created the universe and everything in it. In the preceding five days God had created the world out of nothing. He created the world, the sun moon and stars, as well as the land, the seas, and all plants and animals. On the sixth day God created the jewel of His creation, mankind who was charged to take care of God’s Creation. When God saw what He had done and all He had made it was very good.

    1. Look around you where you are right now and marvel at God’s creation. ( I am writing these words overlooking the Atlantic Ocean, pretty easy for me to do.

    2. What does it mean to you that when god created mankind it was very good?

    3. Why were we created?

    God had a pretty good series of days creating the world and everything in it. We can have some pretty good days by serving and living for the Creator.

  • July 20-Getting Caught

    July 20-Getting Caught

    Scripture Lesson: Jeremiah 5:20-31

    On this date in 1944 St. Louis Browns pitcher Nels Potter is banned for 10 days becoming the first pitcher ever to be suspended for throwing a spitball. The spitball, shine ball, and the emery ball were outlawed by the Major League’s Joint Committee in 1920 which allowed the 17 pitchers using the doctored pitches at the time to continue to throw them until they retired.

    The prophet Jeremiah is instructed to tell the people that God is aware of what they are doing. They have turned away from God and to their sins. They should know better and think they have fooled God. Jeremiah points out on behalf of God that their sins have been known. The people who have stubborn and rebellious hearts are known by God and they are about to pay the consequences for their sins and neglect of God and His ways. God is going to punish them for their sinful ways.

    1. Growing up did you ever think you had pulled one over on your parents when they found out what you had done? How did that feel?

    2. Will mour sins catch up to us? How?

    3. What does Jeremiah say that our sins deprive us of in life?

    Our sins will always find us out. We can never fool God. The consequences of our sins is to be separated from Him and all the good He wants to do for us.

  • July 19-Finish

    July 19-Finish

    Scripture Lesson: Acts 20:22-24

    On this date in 1924 Cardinals pitcher Hi Bell goes the distance in both games of a double header beating the Braves 6-1 and 2-1. The twenty seven year old right hander from Kentucky will be the last National League pitcher to win two complete game victories in one day.

    In our Scripture lesson today Paul is meeting with the Ephesian elders on his way to Jerusalem. It is not an easy conversation because Paul tells them hardships and prison are in store for him. All Paul wants to do is to finish. He wants to finish the task God has for him to complete. He wants to testify to the Gospel of God’s grace. Paul is not concerned for his safety or what lies ahead, even though the elders from Ephesus are greatly concerned, all he wants to do is finish what God has for him to do. Paul has indeed given us a great example to follow. We need to be about doing what God wants us to do no matter what!

    1. How do we find out what God wants us to do for Him?

    2. What do you think God has called you to do?

    3. Why was is so important for Paul to finish and why should it be important to us to finish what God wants us to do for Him?

    God will always be there for us as we serve Him. May each of us keep on serving doing His will for our lives.

  • July 18-Power

    July 18-Power

    Scripture Lesson: Revelation 4:9-11

    On this date in 2001 the game between the Diamondbacks and the Padres is halted at the end of the second inning. In a scene that reminds one of “The Natural”, a transformer catches fire causing a whole section of spotlights in center field to explode. The game is suspended until the next day.

    John give us a glimpse today of the worship of God in heaven. The God who created the universe and everything in it is indeed worthy of glory, honor, and power. The Almighty God is worshipped in praise and adoration. Can you just imagine what that scene would look like in heaven? Today we are called also to give God all praise, honor, and glory. The best way we can do that is to live lives that reflect Him and His values. We need to remember that everything in our world was created by Him. From the ocean waves to the starry night sky, God’s almighty power created it all! God really loves us to create all of this for us to take care of for Him!

    1. As you read this scene of praise, how does it make you feel?

    2. Think about what God has done of you in creation.

    3. Take a moment right now to praise Him.

    God is indeed worthy of all praise , honor, glory, and power. Let’s give Him what He deserves from us each day!

  • July 17-Saves

    July 17-Saves

    Scripture Lesson: Titus 3:3-8

    On this date in 1978 Doc Medich a pitcher for the Texas Rangers saved the life of a 61 year old fan that had a heart attack before a game in Baltimore. Medich a medical student, administered heart massage until help arrived. That was one great save!

    Paul reminds Titus today of another great save, the greatest save of all in our Scripture lesson. Paul writes about God’s kindness and love for us. It was not anything we had done, it was the grace of God that enabled us to be saved. God has given to each of us the rights to become heirs in heaven of eternal life. When there was no way for sinful man to be reunited with a sinless God, Jesus came in and saved the day and each of us by dying on Calvary’s cross. Paul reminded Titus of this in order to emphasize that we must be careful to devote ourselves to doing good. We can never repay God for what He did for us in sending Jesus to this world. However, each of us can live lives of doing good for His Kingdom.

    1. What does it mean to you that God saved us?

    2. Why can we never earn salvation?

    3. Describe ways to live your life doing good.

    The quick thinking and actions of Doc Medich saved a life. The love and grace of God saved humanity for all who believe.

  • July 16-Shame

    July 16-Shame

    Scripture Lesson: Hebrews 12:2

    On this date in 1990 Steve Lyons slides head first into first base to beat out a bunt. The play becomes memorable when the White Sox first baseman drops his pants to brush away the dirt from the inside of his uniform in front of 14,770 fans at Tiger Stadium. Quickly realizing what he had done Lyons pulls up his pants greatly embarrassed.

    Today’s Scripture verse from Hebrews reminds us just how much shame was involved in Jesus’ crucifixion. Crucifixion was reserved for the worst offenders of Roman law. It was the most painful and shameful way to be executed. Crowds would watch and taunt those being crucified. Just read what Jesus had to endure while he was dying on the cross. Society thought it was a shameful way to die. Jesus gladly endured the cross and its shame for you and for me.

    1. What was your most embarrassing moment?

    2. How did it make you feel?

    3. How does that compare to Jesus’ shame on the cross?

    All Jesus had to endure in his last 24 hours for us shows just how much He loves you and me. Today and everyday may we live grateful lives of service to Him.

  • July 15-Memorabilia

    July 15-Memorabilia

    Scripture Lesson: John 19:23-24

    On this date in 2000 The American Tobacco Company’s near mint condition 1909 Honus Wagner card goes for 1.1 million dollars in an E-Bay online auction. The high bidder will pay 1.265 million including a 15% buyer’s premium for the 91 year old card of the Hall of Fame Pirate shortstop.

    Jesus has been nailed on the cross. The four soldiers each took a piece of Jesus’ clothes and they cast lots for the undergarment so it could remain whole. How much would those clothes be worth today? How could we put a value on tht kind of memorabilia? As hard as it would be to put a value on Jesus’ garments, it pales in comparison to putting a value on what Jesus did for us by dying on the cross for our sins and mistakes. The greatest gift ever given cost God the life of His Son. All the money in the world could not have paid the price Jesus paid for us by giving his own life as a sacrifice for our sins!

    1. What is your most prized possession? How much is it worth?

    2. What is the cost God paid for us?

    3. Thank God right now for loving each us that much to have paid the price for our sins with the life of his Son!

    It is amazing to me that a baseball card could have been worth so much. It is even more amazing that God loves each of us so much that Jesus died on the cross for our sins. Doesn’t He deserve our very best every day?

  • July 14-Second Chance

    July 14-Second Chance

    Scripture Lesson: Acts 15:36-41

    On this date in 2000 John Olerud has a game tying double disallowed because first base umpire Jim Wolf calls time. Then the Mariners’ first baseman hits a three-run homer helping the Mariners beat the Padres 7-5.

    One of the greatest second chances in Biblical history is in our Scripture lesson today. Paul and Barnabas are getting ready to go on their second missionary journey. Barnabas wants to bring along John Mark who had left them midway through their first journey. Paul disagreed because John Mark left them and Paul must have thought he was not reliable. Barnabas believed in Mark so much he wanted to give him a second chance. Their disagreement was so intense that Paul and Barnabas parted ways. Paul took Silas and Barnabas took John Mark. John Mark later was reconciled with Paul and is widely believed to have written the Gospel of Mark. All of this happened because Barnabas gave Mark a second chance.

    1. Describe a time you were given a second chance.

    2. Is there someone who needs a second chance form you?

    3. Why is it Christ like to give a second chance?

    God gave each of us a second chance when Jesus died on the cross for our sins and mistakes. There could be no better reason for us to give someone a second chance!

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