Winners must be focused on principle
October 12, 2004
It’s baseball playoff time. But let’s go back in time to the 1950’s. Ted Williams was in the batting cage at Boston’s Fenway Park taking his cuts. “The Splendid Splinter” is one of the greatest hitters of all time. Some would argue that he has been the purest hitter in baseball’s history. Williams remains baseball’s last .400 hitter, and when Ted retired, he did so with 521 home runs and a .344 career batting average.
What made Ted such a great hitter? Great eyesight? Perfect hand-eye coordination? Being a student of hitting? Yes, all of these, but most of all, a rare ability to concentrate. To block out distractions. To focus.
His Red Sox teammates decided to test his concentration ability with a practical joke. While Ted was in the batting cage, His teammates quietly lit some firecrackers and tossed them in at his feet. Pow! Pow! Pow!
What happened? Ted was so focused, he did not even blink. As the firecrackers exploded around his feet, his eyes remained fixed on the pitch. He was so intense that he could block out every distraction. Winners must be focused.
I have known many professional people that are great successes, people who have the ability to keep their attention fixed, both in business and careers. Unfortunately, I have had many of these same people sit in my office broken – broken from having lost their spouse to divorce or their children to rebellion. How can a focused, successful person lose the greatest treasures of their life? They can lose by focusing his/her attention in the wrong place.
There is an oft-repeated axiom that says, “I have spent my whole life (focused on) climbing the ladder of success, only to get to the top and find that I had my ladder resting on the wrong wall!”
Where do you then focus your heart in a place that will guide you to success in the areas of profession, family, personal life and character? May I suggest these words of wisdom:
“Blessed is the man … who delights in the law of the Lord, … Whatever he does shall prosper” Psalms 1
“Therefore, … let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, fixing our eyes on Jesus the author and perfecter of faith, who for the joy set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God. For consider Him who has endured such hostility by sinners against Himself, so that you may not grow weary and lose heart.” Hebrews 12:1-3
Let me add one more thought for your consideration. As you go to the polls and vote on Nov. 2, take along a like-minded friend. Keep your eyes focused on the Biblical values God has given us. Stay focused on principle, not personalities. Which candidate will uphold the Biblical issues of life, not abortion; marriage of a man to a woman, not homosexual marriage. These two issues alone have determined the candidates I will vote for. Stay focused on Biblical values, don’t cast your eyes to the side.