Tuesday, October 1, 2013

Batter Up

Sometimes life throws us these curve balls. I always think about the movie Hook... the mom is watching her son play baseball, he's at bat, and she's sitting in the stands praying, "please, not a curve ball, please, not a curve ball..." Knowing that your son isn't strong enough a player for a curve is a hard part of parenting. You know it's coming, because you've seen the same scene before, probably in your own life, but you can't do anything about the impending "STRIKE", so you pray. You pray it doesn't hit. You pray that if it does, he'll get through it. You pray for the strength that you need to help him get through it.
**I am not a baseball type of person. I'm not a football type of gal, either, nor do I really enjoy soccer, hockey, or golf. I only know sports analogies because my pastor uses them occasionally, and I was raised in west Texas, so I have picked up on some of the key words. So I'm going to stop with that while I'm ahead.**

But what about when the curve is thrown towards you, about your kid? One name and you know where I'm going with this: Abraham. God asked him to sacrifice his son in honor of Him. BURNT OFFERING. I hope you're grasping the importance of that. Look up burnt offerings and how they were done, what happened to that animal... and know that not only Abraham, but Isaac himself, was prepared for that! According to Josephus, Isaac was "pleased with this discourse"! Basically, he told his dad to do what was needed in the eyes of God, 'cause he not only respected his father, but his God so much. 

But in a few spare second's time, there was the voice of God, saying "STOP". Why? 

Only one son need be sacrificed. He'd come later. And no man would have to give up his son. I think only God was strong enough for that. Humans can't even watch their children strike out from the curve balls.... let alone be the ones throwing those curves. 
**See, I really should stop with the baseball talk now!**

So God gave Abraham and Isaac a ram in Isaac's place.
And later, God gave Jesus in humanity's place.

"For God so loved the world, that he gave his one and only son, that whoever should believe in Him shall not perish, but have eternal life." - John 3:16 (NIV)

He sent down a part of himself so rare, to walk among us and live with us again, to experience life as a man, to play in the dirt (even write in it instead of directly answering a question!), to not only swim in the waters, but walk on them... all the while knowing that Good Friday was brewing, that the pain and torture was at hand, and that despite it all, some people would never know how much it meant.

Would you send your son to bat, knowing that not only will he strike out, but that it would bring pain? That it could end his life? Would you be able to send him out there, knowing for a fact that his death is the only thing that will come of it? No. Not even Abraham could do that. Only God was strong enough to.

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