If you want to see the definition of expectant, head to a baseball game. It doesn’t matter where you’re sitting, take a look around, and you will see the tiniest of fans with gloves on, ready to capture a foul ball. That glove says “I am going to catch a baseball today”. I’ve seen some foul balls end up in some surprising sections, but most of those gloves leave without a catch. Does it stop them from bringing their gloves back next time? Absolutely not. Attending a game without a glove is like forgetting to wear your team colors! It goes with the game.
When Jesus talks about child-like faith, I think this is the kind of behavior He’s looking for. In Matthew 18:3-4, He says, “Truly I tell you…unless you turn and become like children, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven. Therefore, whoever humbles himself like this child—this one is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven.”
Child-like faith isn’t just about belief. It’s about the actions that follow. Just like the child at a baseball game, believing against all odds that he will catch a ball from his favorite player, we should expect the unexpected from our all powerful God.
Our prayers should mimic that hope, that faith, that God can do anything. Our hands should be open, ready to be filled with the Word He has for us. I want my heart to be a baseball glove every time I open my Bible.
Ephesians 3:20 tells us, that God is “able to do above and beyond all that we ask or think”. He’s not the sip of Gatorade in between innings, He’s the overturned cooler at the end of the World Series.
This last weekend, our Astros were down, and the prospect of runs was getting slimmer by the inning. But there was this one little boy who rallied with all his might. “Let’s go Astros, let’s go!” and the crowd followed through with a good, robust “CLAP CLAP”. It went on and on…and on. And we kept up the claps. His voice wasn’t going out, his smile wasn’t fading- in fact it stretched wider and wider as he commanded the crowd. His cheer didn’t pull our boys through, but I think his heart was filled by the camaraderie. He cheered with expectancy, with the belief that if he kept cheering, we would keep clapping. It stopped being about the score, and it became about the fellowship of fans.
Isn’t that like our prayers? We go all in asking for something, knowing God gives us the desires of our hearts, asking in faith and belief that God can do anything we ask, sometimes forgetting that His ways are not our own (see Isaiah 55:8-9). As we continue to ask, our focus shifts a bit, not because we’ve given up, but because we see more clearly. Because we open our eyes to what God has laid before us. It might not look like the original path we were on, but it is something sweet, nonetheless.
It’s no secret that I love baseball, but the game took on a different tone this weekend. It’s challenged me to put my glove on, metaphorically speaking, of course- just a fan, not a player! It’s made me think about the joy of leaning on Him to bring us to understanding and contentment. Praying in faith, believing and hoping in Him, can be a rocky ride, but gosh, it’s fun to stand on the other side of impossible.
Gloves up, dear readers.