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The Power of Batting Cages

Uncategorized Oct 07, 2021

In 2015, I began working full-time as a pastor – my first salaried job! I was so excited to be part of a local church and facilitate what God was doing both in the area, and in the hearts of those I was serving.

In ministry school, we were taught to always take a day off for self-care and relaxation every week. No exceptions. Didn’t have to tell me twice! While most would take Saturday as their day off, Mondays felt more natural to me at the time (that has changed since). I wanted to rest after Sunday, rather than before.

So every Sunday night, after a full day of ministry, I would turn off the alarm clock and plan the same thing for Monday every single time: nothing. There was no schedule. No agenda. No priorities. No tasks. Nothing. This is pretty hard for anyone to pull off these days in our overstimulated and overworked society, but it is nothing short of a miracle when you are a high-strung Type A like myself!

For reasons that span far beyond my understanding, on one of these gloriously lazy Mondays I wound up at the batting cages. I didn’t play baseball growing up. No one gave me a recommendation. I was just looking for something relaxing to do and somehow decided smacking a few baseballs around was the answer!

There are few feelings as sweet as perfectly connecting bat to ball. And the more I got a taste, the more obsessed I became. It was stress-relieving, fun, and gave me a challenge that I could handle. I worked hard to protect my Mondays to ensure they served their purpose, and that meant not falling into any kind of routine. But the batting cages became a monthly occurrence pretty quickly.

I am baffled by how few men carve out time for these kinds of activities in their life. We tell ourselves that we’ll do it when life slows down (good luck with that) or that we don’t want to be lazy and take time off for ourselves. You may not realize it but the very things you prioritize above yourself would benefit tremendously if you made yourself a priority. You can list every reason in the book, but do not kid yourself - you are worth every minute of the time off.

Furthermore, your heart needs it. By default, I am a head first, heart second kind of guy, which means that sometimes I can logic my way out of activities that are good for my heart. It also means that sometimes, my heart is really enjoying something – an activity, a song, an interaction – and I can’t put my finger on why. All I know is I want more of it.

That’s how this whole thing with the batting cages started. I went once, had a great time, and couldn’t stop thinking about it afterward. After a few visits, I realized that this was not just a fun activity, these sessions at the cages were feeding my heart and I needed them more than I had imagined.

It doesn’t have to be lavish or extravagant, but your heart is longing for moments to relax, unwind, and come alive. Are you giving it those opportunities?

Cheering you on,


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