Just some early morning thoughts from me to you…
“Imitate God, therefore, in everything you do, because you are his dear children. Live a life filled with love, following the example of Christ. He loved us and offered himself as a sacrifice for us, a pleasing aroma to God.”
Ephesians 5: 1-2 (NLT)
You may not even notice him unless you happen to be in attendance at a game, as I was recently, in which the Colorado Rockies baseball club is playing. But his players, as well as the younger children in the stands know Rene Lachemann and where he is at all times.
He’s the first base coach, and when the Rockies are up to bat and focused on offense, he positions himself in the first base coach’s box to assist hitters and runners in keeping up with the game around them.
But when the Rockies take the field on defense, Coach Lachemann grabs a couple of baseballs to toss to the young fans who come down to the dugout area just moments before, with the hope they will be on the receiving end of one of his baseball gifts.
Rene joined the staff of the Colorado Rockies beginning with this 2013 season. After a short playing career in the Major Leagues, he continued with his love for the game as a manager and coach. He managed with the Seattle Mariners, Milwaukee Brewers, and Chicago Cubs and was the first manager for the expansion team the Florida (now Miami) Marlins. He also coached with the Boston Red Sox, Oakland Athletics and St. Louis Cardinals.
And somewhere along the way, probably under the tutelage of some of his mentor coaches, Rene Lachemann began to understand the platform God had given him to make a difference in the lives of those around him. But no more so than with the lives of the impressionable young children attracted to the game of baseball—and his propensity for tossing baseballs into the stands to them after each inning in the game.
It’s a habit which provides him regular opportunities to share some of the important values which he feels his new young friends should hold dear and integrate into their lives. He shares such things with them as obeying and loving their parents, demonstrating respect for their country, and our flag, and those servicemen and women who stand in the gap for us.
To always do their best at whatever they attempt to do. And if they fall or fail, to just go ahead and pick themselves up and try again. To always do the right thing, not what is right for them. To help others, and to honor the wisdom of those older than yourself. And others.
Lessons for a lifetime—that he has a chance to share simply because he is wearing a Major League baseball uniform which “children of all ages” admire.
We might not feel that we have the same platform as Rene Lachemann—as a coach in Major Leagues—or others similarly situated in sports, politics, or those whom we hold up in some sort of celebrity status.
But you and I have a platform that no one else has. No one.
You stand where no one else stands. Your lifework, your friendships, your family, your accomplishments all elevate you to a singular position of prominence in the lives of the people all around you.
These people respect you and place value on your words and example. They believe in you and receive value from your love. They trust you and assign value according to your values. Whether family, friends or acquaintances, you have earned and continue to earn a platform of importance in the lives of those you touch—for their good.
I wonder if you realize that. I wonder if you believe that. Do you really understand the platforms of opportunity to make a difference in the world which you have?
Every day, and in many moments within each day, we each have a choice—to take or to add value to every one we meet during the course of that day.
Numerous times within each day we have the privilege to use the platforms with which we have been entrusted as a parent, a coach, grandparent, friend, husband or wife, an employer, employee, pastor, teacher, and so many others. And we do it with our words, with our attention, our expressions, our touch, our decisions and our actions.
What opportunities are before you today to make a difference in the life of someone with the platforms God has given you?
They’re all around you. Don’t miss them. Don’t waste the moments. Someone will be blessed.
And I suspect that one of those blessed may be you.
In His Name—Scott
Copyright 2013. Scott L. Whitaker. All rights reserved.