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 other
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
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 was 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 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 first baseman.
Everyone started yelling, “Shay, run to first. Run to
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 toward 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 his 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 this world.”
And now, a footnote to the story. We all have thousands
of opportunities a day to help realize God’s plan. So many
seemingly trivial interactions between two people present
us with a choice: Do we pass along a spark of the Divine?
Or do we pass up that opportunity, and leave the world a
bit colder in the process?
Author Unknown - Please comment if you know the author so credit can be given