In the 16 years he played professional baseball, he struck out nearly 1600 times. Another 1300 times he was walked to first base. He stole second base only 12 times in his entire career. His lifetime batting average of .263 was below the league average. He hit only six triples. On the field, he was never spectacular, committing 112 errors.
But that's only part of the picture. The player in question is Mark McGwire, who finished his career as first baseman for the St. Louis Cardinals. In case you missed it, McGwire set a new record for most home runs in a season in 1998, passing Babe Ruth at 60 and Roger Maris at 61. He didn't stop until he had reached 70 home runs, a phenomenal achievement. The following year, he hit 65 home runs, still more than Ruth or Maris. By the time he retired, McGwire had hit 583 homer uns. When he reached the 500-home run level, McGwire became only the 16th player in baseball history to do so—and he reached it faster than anyone—anyone—before him.
The Bible is filled with similar examples. Adam and Eve were cast from the Garden of Eden—yet the full story is that Jesus died to pay for our sins. David committed adultery with a married woman, then had her husband murdered to cover up the fact that the baby was his—yet the full story is that he received full and complete forgiveness and a restoration of fellowship with God.
Peter cursed and denied, not once, but three times that he even knew Jesus; the full story is that Jesus forgave him and gave him additional responsibilities for taking care of His followers.
Jesus died a cruel and horrible death on a Roman cross; the full story is that He triumphantly rose again! It's been nearly 2000 years since Jesus promised He would return—yet the full story has not yet been finished!
Does it seem to you that God doesn't care for you or know what you're going through? That's not the full story! Does it seem as if things are not going well at all at your work or in your marriage? That's not the full story! Perhaps you think your prayers are not getting through? That's not the full story!
Mark McGwire almost quit baseball while he was still in college, but his wife and parents encouraged him to continue. Christian, be encouraged! Step up to the plate; The Story is not finished.
--Rocky Henriques, www.uticabc.com