At a fundraising dinner for a school that serves
learning-disabled children, the father of one of the
school's students delivered a speech that would
never be forgotten by all who attended. After
extolling the school and its dedicated staff, he
offered a question. |
"Everything God does is done with perfection. Yet, my
son, Shay, cannot learn things as other children do.
He cannot understand things as the children do. Where
is God's plan reflected in my son?"
The audience was stilled by the query.
The father continued. "I believe," the father
answered, "that when God brings a child like Shay into
the world, an opportunity to realize the Divine
Plan presents itself. And it comes in the way people
treat that child." Then, he told the following story:
Shay and I walked past a park where some boys Shay
knew were playing baseball. Shay asked, "Do you think
they will let me play?" Shay's father knew that most
boys would not want him on their team. But the father
understood that if his son were allowed to play
it would give him a much-needed sense of belonging.
Shay's father approached one of the boys on
the field and asked if Shay could play.
The boy looked around for guidance from his
teammates. Getting none, he took matters into his own
hands and said, "We are losing by six runs, and the
game is in the eighth inning. I guess he can be on
our team and we'll try to put him up to bat in the
ninth inning. In the bottom of the eighth inning,
Shay's team scored a few runs but was still behind by
three. At the top of the ninth inning, Shay put on a
glove and played in the outfield. Although no hits
came his way, he was obviously ecstatic just to be on
the field, grinning from ear to ear as his father
waved to him from the stands.
In the bottom of the ninth inning, Shay's team
scored again. Now, with two outs and the bases
loaded, the potential winning run was on base. Shay
scheduled to be the next at bat. Would the team
actually let Shay bat at this juncture and give away
their chance to win the game?
Surprisingly, Shay was given the bat. Everyone
knew that a hit was all but impossible, because Shay
didn't even know how to hold the bat properly,
much less connect with the ball. However, as Shay
stepped up to the plate, the pitcher moved a few steps
closer to lob the ball in softly so Shay could
at least be able to make contact. The first pitch
came and Shay swung clumsily and missed. The pitcher
again took a few steps forward to toss the ball
softly toward Shay. As the pitch came in, Shay
swung at the ball and hit a slow ground ball to the
pitcher. The pitcher picked up the soft grounder
and could easily have thrown the ball to the first
baseman. Shay would have been out and that would have
ended the game.
Instead, the pitcher took the ball and threw it on a
high arc to right field, far beyond reach of the
baseman. Everyone started yelling, "Shay, run to
first. Run to first."
Never in his life had Shay ever made it to first
base. He scampered down the baseline, wide-eyed and
startled. Everyone yelled, "Run to second, run to
second!" By the time Shay was rounding first base,
the right fielder had the ball. He could have thrown
the ball to the second baseman for a tag. But
the right fielder understood what the pitcher's
intentions had been, so he threw the ball high and far
over the third baseman's head. Shay ran towards
second base as the runners ahead of him deliriously
circled the bases towards home.
As Shay reached second base, the opposing shortstop
ran to him, turned him in the direction of third base,
and shouted, "Run to third!" As Shay rounded
third, the boys from both teams were screaming,
"Shay! Run home!" Shay ran home, stepped on home
plate and was cheered as the hero, for hitting a
"grand slam" and winning the game for the team.
"That day," said the father softly, with tears
now rolling down his face, "the boys from both teams
helped bring a piece of the Divine Plan into
Sent by my friend Madhury Roy, Author Unknown