Pass the Peanuts and CrackerJack…

Hang another hat on the rack. Yesterday, I returned to the baseball diamond as an assistant coach for the Somerset Kiwanis.

It was not a planned return to the dugout, but one I am very happy to make. With my two oldest boys swinging bats for the Kiwanis, it was the right thing to do. Tensions have been brewing for a couple of weeks among the coaching staff, players, and parents. This past weekend, it started falling apart as one of the assistant coaches walked away. Tuesday evening the second coach stepped down leaving the Manager looking for help. I was happy to step up when he called.

I coached twice before. Once on the Major League level ( a league for 8 and under) and once with the Little League Kiwanis; who ended up winning the Championship that season. The manager is a good guy/father and I look forward to getting to know him. Why I can’t offer a wealth of baseball knowledge, I can offer what I know best; how to work with students.

While the opportunity to spend time with my boys is exciting, I am also looking forward to being an encouraging voice speaking into the lives of the other players. While I can’t preach from the mound, I hope to let Jesus speak through my actions and words as I coach these boys. And with what I hear the boys have had to deal with a caring, positive voice is exactly what they need.

For you who know me, I have shared my frustration with coaches who berate and beat down their players, expecting more than what these young boys can offer. Now I get to walk in their shoes again. I’ve told my boys over and over, when it’s all said and done, all you have left is your Integrity, Character, and your Relationship with Jesus Christ. I pray that I might be good example for them and the team.

So grab your old mit, a ball cap, and meet me on the diamond. It’s time to play some “good” ball. And win or lose, may my God be glorified! Amen.

– jay

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