An Uncommon Life – Chris Davis
By: Chris Davis
August 2, 2016
Over the course of my career I’ve come to realize that baseball isn’t just a sport, and it isn’t just a job, it’s a calling. After signing a long-term contract, and getting all the things that a young baseball player strives for, I’ve been asked, “What keeps you motivated?” The answer is simple: My faith.
Baseball, for me, is a platform from which to share my faith in Jesus Christ; it’s a way for me to serve Him with all He’s created me to be. But it’s a daily battle for me to maintain both the mindset and desire to be a humble servant.
Success is viewed in many ways. In baseball, a sport that is heavily based on numbers and statistics, it can be hard to feel “successful” on an off-day. It’s easy to think of success as a set of numbers, results, or deadlines. This kind of success isn’t fulfilling, and it doesn’t last. Baseball has seen some incredible players who accomplished much for their teams and never got much individual recognition. No player can go on the field by himself and take over a game; he needs the rest of his team in order to win.
This is the case not only in baseball. Because we’re part of such a statistic-driven society, this is a race you have to run no matter what your profession is. As believers in Christ, we’re called to understand our roles and commit ourselves to giving everything we have to be the best in what God has called us to do.
“Do you not know that in a race all the runners run, but only one gets the prize? Run in such a way as to get the prize.” —1 Corinthians 9
In the past few years, as I’ve been seeking to know Jesus Christ more and follow Him more closely, my mind has been transformed so much. I realize that my sole purpose is to serve others. I define success as being used as a vessel for God in other people’s lives to bring about His purpose. To do that, I know that I need to live vertically, spending time with God in His Word and through prayer, before I go out into the world to do His work.
We’re each going to have good days and bad days, but understanding the love of God is the only thing that can bring lasting joy to our lives. I’ve come to realize that God loves me on the days that I go 0-4 just as much as the days that I go 4-4. Numbers or results do not determine His love for me.
“I trust in God’s unfailing love forever and ever.” —Psalm 52:8
We’re called to live an uncommon life; living a life that doesn’t seek its own way makes no sense in our society. But we should be honored when people think we’re crazy. In Scripture, we’re told that we are to be grateful when persecuted for the Gospel:
“Blessed are those who are persecuted because of righteousness, for theirs is the Kingdom of Heaven.” —Matthew 5:10
No matter what people may say or think, we’re called to make our lives point to Christ. No matter what happens, I’m going to praise God that Christ came before me to live out the greatest example of love and servanthood, giving His life to save mine.
It’s probably easier to “talk the talk” when you’re successful on the field. You definitely have more opportunities to give glory to God verbally when you’re doing well. But for me, some of the times when I’ve experienced the greatest joy and the most growth in my faith have been times when I’m struggling in my game. Where I’m at in my faith is not directly related to how I’m performing on the baseball field.
Whether I’m doing well or not, there’s no easy way to be a Christian. “Easy” goes out the door when you commit your life to God. But when you take that step, you begin to understand how truly beautiful what Christ did for us on the cross is and how great is His love for us. That can never be taken away; this truth frees you to be who God created you to be. It’s a more fulfilling joy than anything you can experience on earth. The feeling of knowing that the Almighty God is pleased with you is truly indescribable.
Chris Davis is a regular contributor to The Increase and will be providing monthly articles and opinions.
Check out Chris’s Increase profile here: http://theincrease.com/author/chris-davis/
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