Skip to main content

strike one

You don't always hit a home run the first time you swing a bat. When I look back at a lot of different situations in my life, you'd think I would know this by now. But many times I still have the unrealistic expectation of getting things right and making it all come together on the first go. This miscalculation has cost me a lot of hope. And made me drop my faith at times. I have also wasted precious time wallowing in dejected disappointment instead of readying myself for the next swing.

I remember the first time Dean and I visited the model condos in an up and coming neighbourhood in Montreal. We loved the open floorplans, the hardwood everywhere, the mezzanine overlooking the living space, and the vaulted ceilings. We also saw the price tag and realised that we could not afford to live there. It became that illusive dream home that we would never have. Ten years after that initial visit, I sit here under my vaulted ceiling a few blocks from that model condo and write this blog.

Then there was the time we were apartment hunting in Stratford. We found a place that we both really liked, but by the time I called the landlord back, he had already rented the place to someone else. I couldn't believe it! Instead, we ended up in a unique temporary living situation. Six months later, when we had to leave that place, the exact same apartment came up for rent again! This time we got it.

The first job I applied for when we moved to Ontario was at a world-famous theatre. It was my dream place to work. Nothing came of it, so I searched for other employment, applying for over 10 jobs and getting nothing. It was depressing, and I finally went on unemployment. While talking to a job counsellor some months later, she mentioned that there was an opening at the theatre, but you had to be collecting EI benefits to qualify for it. Imagine that. I took it and worked at the theatre in numerous capacities for 5 memorable years.

Those are a few stories of successful second tries that I can tell from the perspective of time, but there are a lot of places in my life right now where I have yet to hit the ball. I have done a fair share of swinging , but nothing has connected. It is tempting to toss the bat aside and walk off the field. It is tempting to think, "What's the point?" But strike one is never the end. Strike one is not reason enough to give up. Strike one means that I'm still in the middle of the game, it's still my turn, and I've got to give it another go or two if I want to see how things turn out.

One night when the sky was bright and pink, I went for a drive and shot a series of photos. The photo at the top is the first one I took and a number of shots later, I got the one at the bottom.


Popular posts from this blog

fun with hermeneutics

I am a reader. The stacks of books in my bedroom, living room, and office, many of them still waiting to be cracked open, testify to this fact. I love to read, but I also know that not all reading is the same. Some is more work and some is more pleasure. A light work of fiction requires little of me but to engage my imagination and be carried away by the story. Online reading requires a bit (or a lot) of discernment to make sure the sources are reliable and the facts check out. Academic reading requires me to reason through the arguments being made and connect them to what I already know or have read in the field. Reading an ancient text requires that I suspend my 21st century perspective as best I can and learn a bit about the worldview and language of the time. Acknowledging a text's context, intent, and genre enables me to hear the words and ideas in such a way that my view of history and the world are enlarged.

Reading, interpreting, and understanding the Bible are important …

stained and broken

Recently, I was asked to speak at another church, and the passage of Scripture which was assigned to me was John 1:6-8. "There came a man commissioned and sent from God, whose name was John. This man came as a witness, to testify about the Light, so that all might believe [in Christ, the Light] through him. John was not the Light, but came to testify about the Light." (John 1:6-8, Amplified Bible)

The first question I usually ask when reading something in the Bible is this: What does this tell me about God? Two things are immediately obvious - God is a sending God and God wants to communicate - but there is a third which merits a bit more attention. Though God could communicate directly with humanity, sending truth and love to every individual via some divine mind-and-heart-meld, God chooses to send messengers. Not only that, instead of introducing Jesus directly to the world as the main event, an opening, warm-up act appears as a precursor. What is the point of incorporati…

what binds us together?

For the past few weeks, I have been reading a book by famed psychiatrist M. Scott Peck which chronicles his travels (together with his wife) through remote parts of the UK in search of prehistoric stones. The book is part travel journal, part spiritual musings, part psychology, and part personal anecdotes. A mixed bag, to be sure, and not always a winning combination. At one point, I considered putting the book aside, not finishing it, but then Peck started writing about community. He is no stranger to the concept. He has led hundreds of community-building workshops over the years, helped start a non-profit organisation dedicated to fostering community, and written a compelling book about the topic, one which greatly impacted me when I read it oh so long ago.[1]

In preparation for a course I am teaching next year, I have been doing quite a bit of study on unity and community. Once you start thinking about it, you see and hear evidence of it everywhere. (See my blog on the impact of b…