Last Sunday, I shared a little of my faith journey at my church specifically as it related to Catch 365. At the end of my five minutes, this is what I said.
“When I was in seminary, I started working on a translation of one of my favorite verses. Over the years, I’ve continued working on it. Matthew 6:33 – 34, Ethan’s translation latest iteration, goes something like this:
Seek first God’s Great Story and His justice, and God will take care of everything else. Live the highs and lows of today’s chapter fully; tomorrow’s adventures are tomorrow’s concerns. God will be with you tomorrow, too.
Over the past several years, writing has taught me a lot about what it means to live a good story, and faith is teaching me about living into God’s Great Story. Never give up. Cling to hope with every fiber of your being. Give generously to those around you. Most importantly, the best stories are only possible through the help of friends.
So, I come to this community of friends and ask for what I desire the most: Your prayers for this year. Prayers that this arm will not fall off. Prayers for divine opportunities over the next 245 days. Prayers that, somehow, this crazy catch-playing story will be part of God’s Great Story.”
Today, after worship and after a relatively chilly outdoor baptismal service, my church celebrated its annual May Day Soiree Grill Some Food and Come and Play Event, or something like that. It was held at Doling Park in exactly the same place where I played catch with Ken and his family yesterday.
Henry greeted me as soon as I stepped out of my van. He’s the son of one of my classmates from seminary and a southpaw.
“Did you bring your glove?”
“Did you bring a ball?”
“I’ve got practice in just a little bit though.”
Henry and I started playing catch and were joined by Harper, then took a break for lunch. There was a small pop-up shower during lunch, just enough to give the grass a good soaking.
After lunch, I played catch with:
Elliot — who was baptized and encouraged me to make trick throws.
Harper — who always wanted pop-ups.
Luke — a drummer in the worship band who hasn’t played catch for “at least 8 years.”
Josh — who is forming a church softball team and kept me updated on the Royals score.
Evie — who was also baptized today and has a very strong arm.
Diesel — who caught everything thrown his way with a smile.
Hershel — who encouraged the wearing of glove hats after catch concluded.
Kaylea — who is still working on her knuckle-curveball.
Will — another southpaw who always wears the coolest Star Wars t-shirts.
Church is the people who encourage you, pray for you, and play catch with you as you learn your place in God’s Great Story.
I am grateful for my church family and friends at Hope & Anchor.