Written by Natalie Foreman
For the next 5 weeks, we will go through some devotions together. You will get one every Monday through Friday. In total, we will walk through 25 devotions that will point us to some of the truths and nuances found in the Team Times. These devotions are meant to help us find some focus as we approach our upcoming Mission Trip to Germany.
The Team Time for Baseball Camp Day 1 is 2 ideas rolled together. The first part of that day is “Great Expectations” and the second part is “Stranded” but it will be covered in next week’s devotions. When we originally discussed these ideas and I heard “Great Expectations” I immediately had two thoughts: 1) Charles Dickens’ classic novel and 2) the story of creation. I would love to say that I am cultured enough to have read this novel, but I haven’t. I can testify that the title alone evokes interest and raises questions. So, I got the rundown on SparkNotes and found out that this book follows the story of a young orphan boy, Pip. The plot twists and turns, but it all revolves around the kindness that Pip showed to an escaped convict and how it leads him through life. Even as the story winds around life choices and their outcomes, you can’t help but continue to build expectations in your head. Despite the seemingly dismal beginning, you just sense that it has to get better. When I compare this story that Dickens created to God’s creation, I can’t help but notice the differences.
The stories begin at opposite ends of the spectrum. The creation begins with perfection, while Dickens begins with many imperfections. At creation, it can’t get any better, but with Dickens, it can’t help but get better.
Expectations tend to leave us either disappointed or elated.
As we begin our first week of expectations, I want to give you a challenge. In your phone or a journal, I want you to make a note. Jot down some expectations that you have of the upcoming baseball camp. For baseball camp rookies, this may seem difficult but focus on what you think you will learn and get out of this camp. For veterans, focus on what you want God to do during this camp rather than what has happened at previous camps. Be specific and creative when you are writing this note, so that when you return to this note after camp, you can see if your expectations were met, fell short, or were completely blown out of the water.
For all of us, let’s try and spend this week really focusing on what God can do in and through us this summer. The problem with expectations is not their own outcome but our limited creativity. Allow God to work through these next 5 weeks and challenge yourself with growing closer to God and all that He has planned for this summer.
Philippians 1:20 “I eagerly expect and hope that I will in no way be ashamed, but will have sufficient courage so that now as always Christ will be exalted in my body, whether by life or by death.”
Let Paul’s words encourage you as we move closer to this mission trip. Allow God to expand your expectations for this trip!