Faith Focus: Stepping into the spotlight

Aiden Leathers walked through the tunnel underneath the Texas Rangers baseball field starry-eyed. He and his big brother, Justin, 13, were being escorted to the field to throw out the celebratory first pitch for Buckner Day at the Rangers. That's a big task for anyone, much less a 5-year-old.
 
Aiden looked over at his brother. He didn't say a word, but his smile said it all. "Can you believe this?"
 
Aiden was adopted by Kristine and Michael Leathers through Buckner International in August after being in foster care for a year. When Kristine told Aiden he had the opportunity to throw out the first pitch, he was thrilled. The entire family loves the Rangers.
 
"OK, Aiden. The moment has come. Are you ready?" the Texas Rangers field coordinator asked.
 
"I'm so excited," Adiden exclaimed as he ran out on the field.
 
Like Aiden and the Leathers, God sometimes shines the spotlight on each of us. The moment may not be as public as Aiden’s, but often sends butterflies through our bellies nonetheless.
 
How do you feel when a co-worker asks you difficult questions about your faith? Or when something tragic happens and someone is asking you why God lets things like that happen?
 
Does that spotlight excite you? Does it make you nervous?
 
No matter how you feel, be comforted that God has prepared you for the moment. He is there with you. Deuteronomy 31:8 says “The Lord himself goes before you and will be with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged.”
 
Maybe you won’t have the most eloquent responses for your friends and co-workers on hard theological questions. You might stumble over your words. But God is working through you to make it the words that need to be said. God is working in that moment.
 
Which brings us back to Aiden.
 
To Aiden's right and left, professional ballplayers run past. In the stands, the crowd cheers as Aiden is introduced and he walks out confidently to the mound. He winds up and tosses a strike over home plate. After high-fiving the catcher and the mascot, he walks back toward the dugout, calm and collected, while his family cheers wildly. But his grin reaches from ear to ear as he hugs his parents and his brother.
 
"It was just an incredible day," Kristine said

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