“For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord; plans to prosper you and not to harm you; plans to give you hope and a future.” — Jeremiah 29:11
Being a passionate baseball fan, I longed for many years to visit the Baseball Hall of Fame in Cooperstown, New York. I finally made plans in the summer of 2005 during a family reunion.
While driving up the Pennsylvania Turnpike from my home in Philadelphia, the windshield of our rental car was shattered by a flying piece of metal that barely missed my head. Had the debris struck me or my wife, it could have caused a fatal result. I was reminded of that when a state trooper looked me in the eye and said, “Sir, someone was looking out for you today.” For the rest of the trip I thought about the dire consequences of being struck by the small debris.
A baseball metaphor came to mind to describe the ordeal – that of “extra innings.” Maybe my life was spared by God that day and I was playing in extra innings. How many of us have had those close calls and realized that maybe it was luck? However, there are no coincidences. God has a specific plan and purpose for us and only He can choose to take us home when it is fulfilled.
My thoughts since have focused on what the Lord has for me in this life. It should also cause believers to reflect on life’s purpose. No day is promised to anyone, but sometimes God has to get our attention with a reminder of how quick this life could end. It is only by His grace and mercy that we get to continue to play in extra innings for Him.
— MICHAEL PARENTE
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