To walk by faith there is a constant and sensitive tightening/loosening of mind to get up and get going; yet willing to not launch into the walk with too much organizational control. Kingdom work is neither "successful business principles" nor the opposite; mindless pondering upon a park bench with no eyes for opportunity. So let me show you one day of walking by faith.
Wednesday, Tony and Lea Anne and Mary and I headed for St. Louis to a ball game. We were organized in that we new the road map as well as the clock schedule in which to encounter our day destined to see the Cardinals play. We were not organized in how God would work...but we fully expected Him to as our discussions confirmed.
We had a bit of a problem. Carole Buck promised me eight weeks ago Joe's elite tickets behind home plate. Five weeks ago her house burnt....and her phone melted...and I've not been able to reach her.
We are sitting at 9:00 a.m. at Cracker Barrel in Joplin when Carole Buck calls. Terry, today's the day! I'm working on the tickets (which burnt) and I'll call you back. I love you! Ah, that helped. We were dumbstruck at the timing. Carole later called giving me instructions to go see Aggie (Jack's right arm for years) in her stadium office mid-afternoon.
I got lost looking for Aggies door as I'm yet to get used to the new stadium. In getting lost I ran into one of the Cardinals newest acquisitions, John Smoltz, and we spoke. Yippee! I found Aggie and told her who I was; however she knew nothing about the tickets. Ooops! She called Joe Buck and left a message saying Terry Rush is here to get the tickets. Joe called back in sixty seconds and told her how to arrange for new ones.
Aggie and I talked and I mentioned I had written a book about Jack which included a story about her crippled grandson. The door flew opened. She honeyed me. She sweetied me. She said she would give anything if she only had that book present for an autograph. I told her I would mail her one. The doors flew wider.
Would you like a new Cardinal cap?, she offered. Of course, so she raced to a private stash. Then she told me to be back at 5:00 for the tickets.
The game didn't start 'til 7:00 so Tony and I left Mary and Lea Anne at the hotel and walked to Aggie's office. Her office is the one the media and VIP enter. I told Tony as we walked that I was proud to take him into this zone and I was sure God would be working. I wanted him to be quiet and I would see that he met some special people...but at that moment we didn't know who or where. I geared him up in expectation of not "if" but "when" doors open. Tony was eager and appreciative.
Cardinal broadcaster Dan McLaughlin passed through. I introduced myself (we had met a couple of times) and asked if he would sign our caps. Of course he did and Tony was getting the jeebies. Then Dan said, Would you like me to take you two down on the field when I go? Well....that would be good.
Tony and I were ushered through the tunnel onto the field where an area was roped for about 50 to observe the Cardinals taking batting practice. I looked at Tony and said, Friend, this is how it goes. Hold on. Rick Ankiel was taking batting practice; yet we were given instructions by the guard not to call out their name for distraction's sake. So we didn't.
But....the team photographer, whom I've known for 25 years, walked right past us. Hey Jim, we can't yell at Rick to let him know we are here. Would you tell him? Sure, Rev. How are ya? Hey, I got those DVDs on natural evangelism and I looove 'em. I'm passing them around to my kids now. Good job....and he left.
Moments later Rick by-passed 48 others to shake hands with Tony and me. We talked while he autographed Tony's brand new ANKIEL jersey. He was so pleasant. Later Matt Holliday was signing at the other end of the rope so I told Tony to go down there and see what happens. Matt signed Tony's cap.
Al Hrabosky came by and started griping at me. That's his nature; but he's kidding. Evidently it offended the lady beside me...I didn't see it. He barked about my new card leaving his quote (of me being the worst ballplayer he ever saw) off. Then he put both hands on my shoulder and apologized for not endorsing my new book. He said he just doesn't know how to write on matters like that. I get it. When Mark McGwire wrote for my Jack Buck book, I had to interview him on the phone, write it for him, and send it to him to make minor adjustments.
Ending the conversation Al said, Hey, I want you to come up into the television booth anytime during the game. Always good to see you. And----hey lady----I DO like him! Tony and I went up into the booth for an inning; related more to Al and to Dan and returned to our seats.
I'm back home and my mind is racing with assignments of follow-up. We went by faith. We returned with enlarged vision for continued outreach.
We began our day at 7:00 unsure if we would get into the stadium. When all was said and done....we did sorta get in, didn't we?