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February 8, 2021

I love umping (most of the time 😉). It is one of those passions and hobbies that I have enjoyed doing over the years and it is rewarding (most of the time 😉). I have mostly umped Parks and Rec (younger) and then through High School, baseball and softball. It is great to see the kids develop and I try to help them learn. Some advice I got from experienced umps when I was trained and then first started umping was: 1) when you walk out on the field you must realize that you are the only one that is going to be wrong on a close call; 2) be respectful and be as honest and fair as you can possibly be; and 3) no matter what call you make, own your call.
“There’s no doubting the truth that 2 +2 = 4. There’s no faith necessary to believe it either. But if someone says that they love you, that’s a different matter. Do they really? What do they mean by love? Can we trust them? To believe that someone’s ‘I love you’ is true requires a little faith. But that doesn’t mean love doesn’t exist.
Putting our faith in God has a lot more in common with believing that someone loves us than understanding a simple math sum. We’re never totally free from doubt, because faith and doubt are two sides of the same coin. Without doubt, faith would not be faith. It’s not wrong to question God, and the Bible is full of examples of people getting mad, frustrated and angry with God.
Habakkuk looked around him and didn’t like what he saw. He was surrounded by violence, injustice, and conflict, and it made him confused and fearful. Worst of all was the fact that – as far as Habakkuk could see – God wasn’t doing anything about it. ‘How long Lord, must I call for help, but you do not listen? (Habakkuk 1:2)’
How often have we felt the same way? But that’s never the end of the story. Yes, he expressed his doubts, but Habakkuk took the long-term view and committed himself to faith. ‘Though the fig tree does not bud and there are no grapes on the vines… I will rejoice in the Lord. (Habakkuk 3:17-18)’ Having faith doesn’t mean denying our doubts, frustrations, and fears. And expressing them does not mean denying our faith. The key is always our response, and to trust among the doubts takes courage and a risk-taker’s spirit. That is why faithfulness is so beautiful on our journey. Love is indeed a risk – as is faith – but the Bible continually shows that both are always richly rewarded.” (Bear Grylls, Soul Fuel)
Making a call is not always clear cut. It is not as clear as 2 + 2 = 4. We are never totally free from doubt. When a close call is made, there may be doubt, frustration and fear of how people will react. But one must have faith and courage in our response. The greatest call I ever made was to accept Jesus Christ as my Lord and Savior. I hope you make the same call. Indeed, it is a risk, but Jesus showed the greatest love of all by dying on the cross for us. On the field and off, that is love and through that love we can be richly rewarded. God bless and God’s got this!

About Rev. Bud Budzinski

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