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The Happiest Day of My Life
I became pregnant at the age of 21. It was an unplanned pregnancy as I was not married. You see I had become a born again Christian at the age of 17. However, temptation got the best of me and I ended up getting pregnant. The thought of abortion crossed my mind but it literally was there for maybe one minute before I dismissed it. I knew I was carrying a child and I thought this may be the only child I would ever have and I also knew that I would never be able to live with myself if I had an abortion. As it turned out he was the only child I had.
So, as you might imagine, I carried a lot of guilt. I loved my son and I had kept him but I had given him a life without a father. The thought tortured me on a regular basis. It became even more difficult once my son started to grow up and question me as to why he didn't have a father. I answered him as best I could and we continued on.
When he was about 3 years old his best friend Benjamin invited him to a church group that was sort of like a Christian Boy Scout group. Benjamin's dad picked up my son and to tell you the truth I was glad that my son was around Benjamin's dad as I had tried to find men in my church to step in and be like a big brother to my son but they were either not interested or they had families of their own and were too busy. So I felt like Benjamin's father was an answer to prayer. Every year around Christmastime the boys would make these wooden race cars. Their fathers would help them and then they would race them and the boy who beat everyone got a trophy. The kids who came in last always got an honorable mention blue ribbon. My son's car never won, his car never came in second or even third. His car never won because all the other boy's fathers worked on their cars and made them go faster. Every year he would come in and I could see the pain in his little eyes because it was not about having the fastest car, it was about him not having a Dad to help him. Ben's dad just didn't have the time to work on two cars. This happened for maybe 2 or 3 years.
Finally, Ben's dad noticed that my son was pretty good at pitching a baseball and suggested that I sign him up for little league. So I did. I had never been involved in sports, nor had I ever been to a little league game or to any baseball game now that I think of it. Anyway, he joined and he was doing well. I became the little league mother from hell. At one point the coach (who was just a kid himself) started slacking off on practice games. I read him the riot act and he actually got so mad at me that he punched a nearby shed and broke his hand. I'm not terribly proud of this but my son's happiness was at stake and God help the person who gets between a mother and her son's happiness :) You see the team was pretty good, so good in fact, that they made it to the playoffs. An event that I'm sure would never have happened had the coach and I not had our little talk!
So the big day finally arrived. And I was watching like my son's life depended on it. They were now in the 9th inning overtime, for 3 innings they had gone back and forth back and forth. Finally my son had caught a pop up fly ball over 3rd base and they were up. One batter had come in and they were now tied. My son was up, if he could hit a home-run they would win the play-offs. My stomach was in knots. He was a good player but this was a lot of pressure for a 7 year old. Finally he hits the ball way out passed 2nd base and he is running for his life, as I scream my voice hoarse, he rounds 3rd with the 3rd baseman, ball in hand within a few inches of getting him out. He slides into home at just the nick of time and they win the play-offs! The crowd went wild and they grabbed my son and carried him on their shoulders, he was the star of the show. I had practically lost my voice during the game but somehow retrieved it in a joyous frenzy of happiness and tears streaming from joy. I have never been so happy in my life, it was as if all those disappointing wooden car races and all they stood for just melted away in a single moment.
It has been over 20 years since that day and I still have to say it was the best day of my life. And even writing this article brings tears.
The other day I was thinking about this day and I was thinking about our lives as Christians. I was wondering if the people in heaven watch and yearn for us as I did for my son. I was wondering if their stomachs were tied up in knots wondering if we would do the right thing, witness to one of their relatives or help a stranger along the way, you know hit the ball out of the park so to speak. I was wondering if when we did if they too, cheered like I did for my son, overwhelmed with joy and happiness. It says in the Bible that we have a cloud of witnesses that watch us and the stakes are much higher than just a little league play-off game, the stakes are heaven and hell. I wonder if when we finally arrive in heaven if those same witnesses will be overwhelmed with joy at us having run the race and overcome the odds to gain the prize, Jesus Christ.
(Heb 12:1) Wherefore seeing we also are compassed about with so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which doth so easily beset us, and let us run with patience the race that is set before us.