I really had not planned on doing the #30DaysofGratitude theme this year, because I knew I wouldn’t keep up with it. Here it is, November 5th, and I am just getting around to writing my first post in 2 weeks. Where have I been? Watching and being completely distracted by the most amazing post season in baseball ever! And I am SO grateful for an incredible ride all the way to a World Series Championship! WooHoo!
I have written about being a lifelong Chicago Cubs fan married to a St. Louis Cardinals fan before. My husband’s team has been far more successful in recent years than my Cubbies, but the times, they are a-changin’! Last year, we outlasted the Cards in the post season (barely), and this year we went all the way in dramatic fashion. I stayed up late watching every post-season game, but none had my heart pounding like Game 7 of the World Series! Baseball fans across the country, and even around the world, have commented on the “epic” nature of the Cubs’ victory. Many of us had tears of joy!
I was wondering…how do I make this post somehow “meaningful.” What makes it worth writing about? I have discussed Saints and my Catholic faith, fighting abortion and ministering to the needy. But isn’t this just baseball?
Yes. And no. Ultimately, this is just an exciting end to an exciting sports series. Sure, I would joke about a Cubs championship being a sign of the end of the world…but we’re all still here! I never believed in the “curse” of the billy goat because I don’t believe in curses. Yet, my Facebook chatter includes posts like “There is no goat” and “The goat is dead”. Go figure.
But if there is anything profound to derive from this, maybe it is the value of fidelity. Believing in and staying with your team (or your spouse or your kids) through the hard times, knowing someday it will be better. Or the virtue of patience in achieving a goal. This year, the Cubs won over 100 games in the regular season; just 4 years ago they lost over 100 games! Strong leadership, development, and perseverance made this year possible. Our world is quick to give up and throw things away. How much more could we achieve if we were more disciplined in creating positive results at home, at school, in our careers…in our prayer life?
And how about that rain delay? Initially frustrating millions of fans who were already exhausted, that rain delay worked for the Cubs. They regrouped and encouraged one another in the Clubhouse. They reminded each other of their talents and skill. Then they came out ready to win! For me, there have been times when I struggled to reach something in my life, when suddenly I had my own “rain delay.” I needed to regroup; to listen to God remind me of my purpose and His call for me in my life.
So yes, baseball is just a game. But like many things in life, we can learn very important lessons in less important activities. Besides, God gives us many things in life so that we can experience joy, even fun. God is Holy…He is not grumpy! I won’t dare to say He preferred the Cubs over the Indians this year, but He did permit the Cubs to prevail this time around. I am convinced He is smiling with us!
But who knows. Having the youngest Championship team in baseball history, the Cubs may have a very bright future. Just wait until next year!