“…We know that affliction makes for endurance, and endurance for tested virtue, and tested virtue for hope.” Romans 5:3
Henry Louis Gehrig, better known as Lou Gehrig, played baseball for an amazing 17 seasons with the New York Yankees. His strength and success on the baseball field earned him the nickname “The Iron Man” – and the love of his fans. In the late 1930’s, he noticed some physical limitations he never had before. After much testing, he was found to have Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis, more commonly called ALS, or today – Lou Gehrig’s disease.
This disease, which involves rapidly increasing paralysis, usually leads to death within three years. It would force Lou to retire at the age of 36 from the game he so loved.
It was during his last game, with Yankee Stadium packed beyond all safety measures, that Lou gave his famous speech, beginning with the stunning words, “Today I consider myself the luckiest man on the face of the earth.”
Baseball’s Iron Man, the man who made a living with his physical strength and baseball prowess, called himself the luckiest man on earth at the very moment he had to give up his beloved game, his entire career.
Lou Gehrig was focusing on his friends and family when he made this claim of good fortune –and not his disease. He kept his eyes on all he still had left in life and not on what was being taken away.
It’s easy to focus on the hard times when our hearts and spirits feel broken. Remember how the disciples mourned Jesus on Good Friday? They didn’t yet know about the joy of Easter Sunday.
But we do.
If we focus on the unexpected, unbelievable joy Jesus brought when He conquered death on Easter Sunday, it may not change how long we live, but it can help us change how well we live.
Watering the Seeds
What are you focusing on today? Is it positive or negative?
How can you reflect on the unexpected joy of the disciples on Easter and apply it to your life?