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Posts Tagged ‘Ted Williams’


If you are going to write a book on the Apostles’ Creed these days, you need to come up with some novel aspect to the book because there are many books out there by the likes of Witsius, Packer, McGrath, Horton and others. I’m not talking about novel theology, for that would be problematic.

Ray Cannata and Joshua Reitano, in their book Rooted, has come up with a specific and significant addition that makes their book very much worth reading, and studying. They added a missional element to the book so we can think through how our catholic (universal) theology leads us to mission (this article is essentially an excerpt).

“You can believe that God is mighty to guide you as you go out and recklessly pursue his mission to love and serve your neighbors, even when the mission seems impossible. You can believe that God is mighty enough for you to put aside your obsession with being “safe” and move toward the pain of those in need.”

Ray and Joshua currently serve in very different places. Ray used to pastor a church in NJ (near NYC), and is known in the PCA as “the Pastor who ate New Orleans.” Joshua is the pastor of a church in Cincinnati. These are 3 very different contexts so their idea of mission is not limited by particular contexts.

“The Kingdom expands when you lay down your life, when you sacrifices your desires and your comfort for the good of others.”

The book is comprised of 13 chapters, or studies, that work through the Apostles’ Creed. Each chapter begins with a Scripture text and ends with the focus on mission and some questions for group discussion. It is intended to be used over the course of a quarterly study. The chapters are short enough to be read in 20-30 minutes time frames. Any book that brings up the Three Stooges and Ted Williams has to be interesting in my estimation. There are the obligatory references to The Lord of the Rings, the Chronicles of Narnia and U2 (my potentially published book has some of those) but they fit and aren’t the standard references you might expect. They also draw on a number of personal and historical events to illustrate their points. As a result the book is accessible (not over people’s heads) and interesting as well as meaningful.

“Belief in the resurrection of the dead enables you to live a big life. It allows you to take up your cross and move toward pain and suffering.”

I might use this with our men’s group or community group next year. It is sound, convicting and (as I said above) interesting. Like many churches we struggle with that idea of mission- being part of God’s great, big story in order to invite others into that story. There have been recent books that come to mind that offer a similar call to a radical life. This is far more gracious, warm and balanced. I found the others lacking a gospel foundation and motivation. They seek their motivation in great theological truth, not guilt. Pastorally, this is very important. I want holy affections, as Edwards called them, to arise as a response to biblical truth. This book seeks to do that very thing.

[I received a free copy from my friend who works with the publisher Doulos, not necessarily for the purposes of review.]

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"Are you ready to listen yet?"

Peter Gammons know calls Dice-K the Riddler.  I’d prefer to call him The Enigma, though I’ve called him Diva-K in the past.  He is an incredibly talented pitcher who nonetheless drives Red Sox crazier than Manny “Money” Ramirez ever did.

Dice-K arrived as a highly touted front-line starter destined to conquer America.  He had 6 “plus” pitches.  But somewhere along the road to glory something went seriously wrong.  It started well.  He was a key component of Red Sox 2007 World Series championship (32 starts, 15-12, 4.40 ERA, 201 Ks, 1.32 WHIP) by eating up over 200 innings as advertised.  He had a mystifying 2008 season (29 starts, 18-3, 2.90 ERA, 154 Ks, 1.32 WHIP in only 167 innings).  Notice that consistency in the WHIP.  He gave up 13 fewer HRs.  He put guys on base at the same rate, but fewer scored.  The maddening aspects began to kick in.  But it was easy to look at the record and ERA and get hopeful for the future.

Then started the injuries and power struggles.  Francona has said that he essentially can’t talk with Dice-K.  There is a cultural divide that seems quite ginormous.  His WHIP and ERA have gone up, innings have gone down.  The frustration factor has correlated with the WHIP and ERA.

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I just loved David Halberstam’s book, The Teammates: A Portrait of Friendship.  It tells the tale of Dom DiMaggio, Johnny Pesky and Bobby Doerr’s last visit to see their friend, Ted Williams, before he died.  It was the story of 4 friends who shared more than a love for the national past time.

I am reminded today because another of those friends passed away.  While watching a replay of last night’s Red Sox victory over the Indians, Dom DiMaggio passed away.  The brother of Jolting Joe DiMaggio, he was a superb player in his own right- being a 7-time All-Star.  Ironic that he was the brother and teammate to the 2 greatest hitters of that era, and all-time.  Williams is the last man to his .400, and his .406 may never be eclipsed.  Joe’s 56-game hitting streak, the same season, is also most likely untouchable.  More irony, Dom holds the Red Sox hitting streak record to this day.  He drew great praise from those superstars.  Ted called him the best lead off man in the American League.  Joe called him the best defensive centerfielder he’d ever seen.

After baseball Joe was a successful businessman.  He was one of the original owners of the Patriots, and tried to buy his beloved Red Sox.  He was able to excel at the very thing his superstar friend and brother struggled the most- family.  He was not merely admired for his athletic skill, but for his character and intelligence.  All true Red Sox fans have a special place in their hearts for Dom.  I am so glad the Red Sox are wasting no time in honoring him.

HT: Boston.com

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