Anyone who knows me sooner or later figures out that I am a huge baseball fan. George Will once observed, “Baseball, it is said, is only a game. True. And the Grand Canyon is only a hole in Arizona. Not all holes, or games, are created equal.” I agree completely. What may come as a surprise, living in the South, is that my favorite team has been and always will be the New York Yankees. How can a southerner be a fan of an extreme northern team? The answer can be expressed in two words: “Mickey Mantle.” When I was a young boy growing up during the days of black and white television with rabbit ears antenna, everyone watched the Game of the Week on Saturday afternoons, (yes there was sports before ESPN.) Growing up in the late 50’s and 60’s, the one thing that could be counted on was that the Yankees would be featured at least every other week, and the leader and hero of the Yankees was Mickey Mantle. Most young boys of that time period idolized Mantle. Most, like myself, tried copying his every move. I distinctly remember even trying to copy the way Mantle would remove his batting helmet, with that scooping backwards to forwards style that he used. I grew up a Mantle fan and that meant a Yankee fan. I have never changed.
Later on in life I wanted to pitch. It soon became obvious that I did not have the “stuff.” I’ve often said that I wish I had “thunder and lightning” in my right arm. I could see myself standing on the mound at Yankee Stadium and striking out the side. Alas, this was wishful thinking. Derek Jeter once said:
“There may be people who have more talent than you, but there’s no excuse for anyone to work harder than you do – and I believe that.”
There is a lot to be said for this sentiment but one thing is certainly true: without talent and natural ability, a person cannot compete at the highest level no matter how hard they work. I cannot throw a baseball at 90 miles per hour and never will. I do not have the natural ability to do so no matter how much I wish, hope, or maybe claim otherwise.
Lately, there have been several news stories about the so-called “Bathroom Law” recently signed by the governor of North Carolina. It seems incredible that a state government would actually have to pass legislation directing which sex should use which public restroom facilities. However, such is the immoral and degenerative state of our society. It seems that several celebrities and corporations have come out against the new law in North Carolina and have threatened to boycott the state. These individuals and companies have been given a free and public voice by our media and allowed to declare that North Carolina is insensitive to the rights of the “transgender” community. All of this is touted under the disguise of personal liberty and freedom. It seems that proponents of wickedness and perverseness always try to hid their agendas behind noble and honorable banners. In California, laws even allow young school children to decide whether they want to be considered male or female. Those who subscribe to this utterly ridiculous idea have obviously never studied biology.
As humans we are born with 23 pairs of chromosomes. In each pair, one gene is inherited from the father, and the other from the mother. The first 22 pairs of chromosomes are called autosomes. There is no difference between males and female autosomes. However, the 23rd pair of chromosomes is different. In this pair, females have two X chromosomes, whereas males have an X chromosome paired with a much smaller Y chromosome. The presence of the Y chromosome means that the male-determining gene, SRY, is also present. SRY influences the development of the male anatomy. For the female, within the 23rd chromosome pair, only one X chromosome is active. The other is inactive.
All of this is simple heredity and it is impossible for the individual to change any part of it. Despite the media circus surrounding Bruce Jenner, a male can castrate himself, subject himself to 100 visits to a plastic surgeon, change the way he dresses, and even change his name, but none of that makes any difference. If a person is born male, then he possesses the chromosome make-up of a male and no re-imaging can change that fact. He is a male. He may wear a dress and called himself a woman but that does not change the fact that he is still a male. Male-ness is not based on physical appearance but on innate God given attributes at birth that cannot be changed.
If a man can become a woman by simply declaring himself to be so, then I claim myself to be a Cy Young worthy pitcher and should immediately pack my bags for New York. I should soon have a multi-million-dollar contract in hand and just by my declaration opposing batters should pathetically swing and miss at my every pitch. I can see it now. Maybe I should just go ahead and be fitted for my World Series championship ring. I also need to find a good picture of myself to use for my plaque in Cooperstown.
Back when I was younger, I went about this all wrong. I thought a person had to work hard to achieve something. Now, I find out that all I need is to publicly decide what I want to be and it automatically becomes true. I wonder if the fans in the stadium who watch me pitch would have the same appreciation for my talent as I do?
Of course this is not new. Sinfulness, moral depravity, and a complete lack of concern for God’s truths have been around since the formation of the world. No matter how much I may claim otherwise, there is one thing true about my baseball talent…I don’t have very much. And, no matter how much people may despise God’s Word, there is another truth:
“For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who hold the truth in unrighteousness…For the invisible things of Him…are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even His eternal power and Godhead; so that they are without excuse… Perhaps we can find some comparisons for our lives from baseball and the hopeful wishes of my youth. This world is just spring training; a time for proving yourselves worthy for being on the team when the real season begins. We should all embrace the person our Creator made us to be and endeavor to use our being and talents to glorify God. And may we all recognize the real “manager” of the world and live by His statutes.
Perhaps we can find some comparisons for our lives from baseball and the hopeful wishes of my youth. This world is just spring training; a time for proving yourselves worthy for being on the team when the real season begins. We should all embrace the person our Creator made us to be and endeavor to use our being and talents to glorify God. And may we all recognize the real “manager” of the world and live by His statutes.