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"A Lesson from the Say Hey Kid" - by Rev. Weldon Bares

Willie Mays passed away last week at the age of 93. He was called the “Say Hey Kid” because that was how he often greeted people.

Willie was one of the greatest to ever play baseball. He had a batting average of .302 over 22 seasons. For eight years in a row he drove in more than 100 runs. He hit 660 home runs. He was the first to steal 300 bases and hit 300 home runs. Defensively, he had 7,095 putouts, the most in major-league history for an outfielder. He won the Gold Glove award twelve times.

In 1951, when Willie Mays was just 20 years old, he started playing for the New York Giants. His manager was Leo Durocher.

But it didn’t go well. For his first 12 times at bat, Willie went hitless. Finally, he hit a walk-off home run off Warren Spahn in the bottom of the 16th inning, but then he went back into his hitting slump.

He was 1 for 26 when Leo Durocher found him one day crying in the dugout. He looked up and said, "Mr. Durocher, I can't hit in the majors." His manager said, "Listen, as long as I'm the manager of the Giants, you are my center fielder."

The pressure was now off and Willie Mays got two hits the next day. He was off to becoming one of the greatest.

Are you in a slump right now? Do you feel like sitting in the dugout and crying?

I am so thankful that as Willie Mays had someone who believed in him, we also have Someone who believes in us. Scripture tells us our Creator encourages us and lifts us up. The Apostle Paul affirmed, “If God is for us, who can be against us?” (Romans 8:31)

Are you in a slump? Don't despair. With God's help, a hitting streak might be right around the corner for you!

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