Monday, October 22, 2012

Why I Am Thankful For Cincinnati Reds Pitcher Mike Leake

In more than one place it has been recommended that writers ought to frequently “Google” themselves.  I do not do that.  First of all, it just sounds weird and not something that a follower of Jesus ought to be doing.  Secondly, I don’t benefit from “Googling” myself.  You know why?  Because for the first hundred or so pages I have to read about a Cincinnati Reds pitcher that stole my name. 

Apparently there is a feature on that Google machine where you can type in your name, your website, or really any keyword search and then get email updates every time somebody posts something to Al Gore’s internet with those words.  That would frustrate me to no end.  I would get double digit updates every day of someone writing an article on Reds pitching or stealing clothes from Macy’s.  So this little feature that is supposed to help writers would do very little for me if I searched for my own name. 

And for that I am very grateful. 

I know my own heart.  I know that I can become far more conscious of how the world views me, than how the world views Jesus.  Every time I got an email update about some chap interacting with something I wrote, my head would either swell with pride or my ego would be dashed by their criticism.  Left unchecked my heart has a tendency to “think more highly of myself than I ought”.  Which of course is firmly opposed to Paul’s exhortation to “not think more highly of yourselves than you ought”. 

The fact that I am the lesser Mike Leake is very beneficial to my soul.  Of course I would prefer that more people were concerned about articles lifting up Jesus instead of rambling on about a guy throwing a fastball or his slider getting rocked.  But I’m okay if that happens apart from my name—as it inevitably will.  I am glad that I cannot constantly monitor what the internets think about my writing.  This way I can just faithfully plod along and hopefully have a heart more like Paul’s that was far more concerned about the kingdom and mission of Jesus than he was about counting his own baptism numbers. 

So, thank you other Mike Leake.  Keep rockin’ that fastball.  Or not.  It really doesn’t matter because as long as you are playing in the MLB and I’m just faithfully preaching the gospel the world will value you far more.  And that’s cool with me because my treasure is secured elsewhere.  Of course, I think it’d be awesome if Christ captivated your heart and that way the greater Mike Leake and the lesser Mike Leake would both be representing Christ to the world.  You through your fastball and me through my writing and preaching.  But until that day I remain grateful that you keep my heart in check by your Google domination. 

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