Lessons From The Bleachers

It’s been an uncommonly rough year for me as I’ve struggled with and through a lot of long-held notions that, it turns out, were all of my own making. I’ve learned a lot about grace this year, though I know I’m only scratching the surface of what I have yet to learn.

In the past, I would have looked unfavorably at the moms and dads who were constantly playing around with their cell phones during their kids’ game. I would have assumed that they were chatting with a friend, or playing Angry Birds, rather than watching their son or daughter play. In fact, I would have been so busy minding what they were doing, that I would not have seen my own prideful attitude, and I would probably have missed some of the action on the field myself as I concentrated on watching them. What hypocrisy! (Matthew 7: 1-5 would hit the nail on the head in this situation.)

Empty bleachers at the ball park

©exgoatmilker.wordpress.com Used with permission.

Here’s the lesson that I learned while sitting in the bleachers.

Will’s very first game this year, in fact his very first game ever, was on a beautiful Saturday in early March. Copper works Saturdays, and it is very difficult for him to schedule time off on Saturday. He asked that I keep him posted as the game was played. I used my phone to send a couple of pictures as Will and the team warmed up. I sent him the score at the top and bottom of every inning. I sent the play-by-play as best I could.

The boys on the bench

The boys on the bench. ©exgoatmilker.wordpress.com Used with permission.

Then it was Will’s turn in the batting rotation.

I texted each pitch. Copper said that his heart was pumping just as though he were at the game! Our son has never played ball before, and he was, by his own admission, the weakest player on the team. His hope for the day was to not strike out every time he came to bat. Knowing this, I was texting. “He looks nervous.”  “Strike one.”.

Strike one!

Strike!

I don’t remember now, what the count was, but I do remember quite well the sound of his bat when it hit that pitch and sent it sailing into right field! I cheered, and I watched, but my fingers were flying as I texted my husband, “base hit”.

I’ve continued my practice of texting my husband during Will’s games. Copper has missed quite a few games and has arrived for the final innings of many more. My texting him has allowed him to “be there” even though he’s not able to be in the bleachers cheering with me.

I certainly do not know the other guy, or gal’s, story. Maybe they are just frivolously messing around on their phones instead of watching the game. It’s really not something I should even be concerned with. And maybe, just maybe, they’re giving someone, who wishes they were at the game themselves, a play by play description of the game.

Game Ball!

Game ball! Will went 2 for 3 in his very first game ever!

Maybe they’re even texting Dad a picture of the game ball!

 

*Note – Will’s team has advanced to the final round of the playoff tournament and are playing what may well be their final game of the season tonight. Go, Cardinals! 

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20 comments to Lessons From The Bleachers

  • WOOHOO! Great post, Cher.

  • Belinda

    Very thoughtful post, which gives me some food for thought. thank you.

  • Bren

    YAY!!!! I miss those days….we didn’t have texting back then 😛 I may be sitting on a soccer field soon, and I am certain I will be texting Dad as he works every Saturday!
    Congrats to the CHAMPS!!!!

    • Bren – I’ve never had a child in sports before. It’s been a great first year, and I’m so blessed having the technology at hand (and in hand) to keep Copper, and even Corin, up to speed on the games. I know that you’ll enjoy the same blessings when soccer season rolls around.

  • So aptly put!! I so enjoyed your post and can identify with your warning about being a hypocrite by judging others. I have been known text my husband too for similar reasons!! Hey! We (slightly)older moms can keep up with the tech-savy younger generation to some extent 🙂

  • Can’t remember the last time I got “misty” about a sports story…great blog, Cher! 🙂

  • Diana in Illinois

    ouch… I am SO judgemental and dissapproving of others constantly being on their phones. You are SO right….. it should not even concern me.
    Thanks for delivering a message to me today. The Lord will use a willing voice.
    diana in illinois

    • Oh, Diana! I understand! The Lord has used some very sweet circumstances, and some very hard ones, to shake me up in this area. My flesh still tends towards being judgmental, but with His help I’m learning to extend grace to others.

  • Vickie

    Great post! I so miss those days of Little League – they were before cell phones and texting or I’d be right there with you letting some one know what was happening. Ouch on the judging others – thanks for the reminder! Blessings.

  • It seems God is always teaching me I have to change, tweaking my beliefs to be in line with His. I first started noticing it when Christopher was born and all my perfect parent ideas flew out the window, hehehe.

    My two kids both prefer texting to calling. The sound of a text coming in sends me quickly to my cell phone. 🙂

    David (oldest grandson, now nine) has chosen baseball as his yearly activity. Each child gets one (Elisabeth’s is piano, Faith’s is dance, the two younger children are just enjoying home time right now).

    Always glad to see a new post from you.

    Their games were on Sunday afternoons which meant for a very busy Sunday during baseball season.

    • Our family does more texting than talking on the phone, too. Funny, but it really does seem to help us stay in better touch all throughout the day. Rather than a call or email telling all about the day, quick little texts (especially those that include pictures) are much better and keep us more up to date with one another.

  • Corin

    Thanks for all of the text updates! I SO wish I could’ve been there last night!

  • Susan G.

    Great post! I found myself being self conscious as I read my grocery list from my iPod touch while at the grocery store. I wondered why I felt that way. I soon realized it was because I had passed judgment on those using their devices while with their children. (Apparently I must have thought they needed to check with me first.) HA! We realize how damaging our measuring rods are when we use them on ourselves.

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