Jews & Sports

from Big Mo's Sports Desk

Stretching a Triple

[by Yerachmiel Tilles]


Spring is in the air. That means Passover has come, the Omer has to be counted, plus one other major event. The baseball season has started.

This USA national pastime also provides a good analogy for Jewish history. Perhaps that is why there are kosher hot dog stands in several Major League stadiums.

We, the Jews, are supposed to be the cleanup hitter in G-d's lineup. The clutch player that everyone relies on.

And in the later innings, with the scoreboard indicating a very close game, we really came through. They tried to strike us out, but with a good eye, controlled body movement, trained reflexes and a powerful swing from right to left we connected with a solid piece of the ball. A deep hit!

We passed first base - the Base HaMikdosh HaRishon, the first Holy Temple. We rounded second base - the Base HaMikdosh HaSheni, the second Holy Temple. And we know that for sure we can reach third base - the Base HaMikdosh HaShlishi, the third Holy Temple, to be completed soon by King Moshiach. But we must pray that the Chief Umpire should please remember that between second base and third base is positioned a SHORT stop, not a long one.

And yes, the third base coach - the one who guides us in our run to the third base -- is waving us on! He intends that not only can we reach third base -- build the Third Temple -- but then when we do we should not pause; we can complete a rare inside home run if only we perform an excellent turn on our race to get home -- the ingathering of the exiles).

Remember though: We must always be careful, but especially now when charging for home, to not allow the catcher - the one who is always trying to catch us - to tag us for his side, trick us into a rundown, or in any way force us out. He may seem an impassable obstacle as he blocks home plate, but we have to truly believe that even if we are not among the treasured few that are powerful enough to knock him over and turn him around, it is still within our capability to ignore him and slide by. We have to remain focused on the plate - the goal. As long as we are touching home, we are safe.

Then we will score. And win! No extra innings!

[Inspired by Rabbi Elik Friedman]

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