Being Present - Matthew Boyd

This season God is showing me just how present He is, and He’s calling me to be the same.


As spring training kicked off, my wife and I were excited to be able to host a Bible study for all the players and their families. It’s an awesome opportunity to gather minor leaguers and major leagues, with their wives and kids, to do life together and get in the Word. Our landlord is also joining the weekly study! I know God is present in this time because He tells us that where two or more are gathered, there He is (Matthew 18:20). This Bible study has been going on for many years — way before I was in the league — and we are honored and excited to be able to host it this year.


Before spring training began, we had prayed over our home — that God would provide the right place for us so we could bless others. He’s provided abundantly, answering our prayer and giving us the opportunity to host. We know God has commissioned us to go forward and walk in faith. During the offseason, we were stepping out boldly and courageously to answer whatever call He had for us among our friends and in our city. As we did so, we saw Him show up in incredible ways! We’re not looking for recognition or rewards; we don’t want others to try to identify us. God is simply calling us to be more like Him. To do that, we need to step outside our comfort zone.


It would be easier to stay at home with our daughter, remaining comfortable with what we know. But every time we step outside of that comfort zone, we watch God provide in amazing ways — ways we never would have expected. This Bible study is another opportunity to experience His power through His people.


Every time we get the chance to pass food, break bread and open God’s Word with teammates, it’s really special. Here we feel the Spirit of God more than ever! And often, when we focus on God’s Word as a group, we discover deeper, hidden truths we might not have noticed on our own. This is powerful.


So how do we bring this to the field? Whether there are two Christians on the field or 20, the Spirit of God is there and should be contagious for others. Meeting at Bible study with our teammates does change how we interact on the field. When you see a brother in Christ pour his heart out, something unique happens. When you serve together as a brotherhood, you become stronger, knowing you’re there for something greater than yourself. And that’s the essence of a team. We serve each other and play for something greater than ourselves. We need to buy into this mentality to become successful. This will change our perspective on the game and how we play it.


One of the great game-changers in my life has been James McCann. He really encouraged me and made me want to live out my own faith the way I would see him. There are certain people who exude the light of God, walking faithfully in any environment they find themselves in, regardless of the situation. That is James. It’s admirable; it’s inspiring. Being young in the league and having had the chance to learn from someone like him was such a blessing. Whether he was walking through a storm or not, he was glorifying the Lord at all times.


However God chooses to use me, I’m all in. Whether I can be a James to a younger teammate, or something else, I want to live like Christ. Christ stripped away His own agenda and lived a selfless life. He put others before Himself, truly caring for them in every way. If we do all we can to worship and serve Him, everything else will sink into place under God’s perfect plan.


— Matthew Boyd, Detroit Tigers pitcher


Matthew Boyd is a regular contributor to The Increase and will be providing monthly articles and opinions.


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