On Saturday, April 26, 2008, the Central Washington Wildcats were facing the Western Oregon Wolves in a women’s fast-pitch softball double-header. Sara Tucholsky was a senior for the Wolves. She had played softball all through high school and college, and was known as a small-ball, line drive kind of hitter. However, in the second inning of the second game of the double-header that afternoon, she hit a ball further than she ever had. HOME RUN! She had never hit a home run...ever! In her excitement, she forgot to touch first base. She turned to go back, and she heard and felt a loud snap in her right knee. The pain that followed immediately caused her to collapse, and she pulled herself back to first base, hugging the bag. Her ACL was torn, and her game, as well as her career, were over.
As Sara lay they are on first base, everyone wondered what would happen next. She obviously couldn’t continue. According to the umpire, if her teammates helped her round the bases, she would be out. They could sub in a pinch runner for her, but it would only count as a 2 RBI single instead of the home run since she only made it to first. Nobody on the Wolves team seemed to know what to do. But Mallory Holtman did.
“Can I help her around the bases?” Mallory asked. The question shocked the umpire, because Mallory was the power hitting, veteran first baseman for the opposing Central Washington Wildcats. He thought a minute, and then agreed. Mallory motioned to the shortstop Liz for help, and they came over to first base.
“We are going to pick you up and carry you around the bases.” Mallory said. Sara nodded and said, “Thank you.” Mallory and Liz carefully picked up Sara, and carried her around the remaining bases, pausing at each one for Sara to touch the base with her good leg. “Thank you,” Sara said again. “You hit it over the fence,” Mallory replied. “You deserve it.” Mallory sacrificed to do the right thing. The Wildcats lost the second game 4-2, knocking them out of the playoffs.
Sara’s coach was quoted as saying, “It’s a great moment when someone has character to step up and do the right thing at the right time.” I couldn’t agree more. As Christ taught us, “love your neighbor as yourself.” (Mark 12:31)
Consider those whom Christ surrounds you with this week. Simply put, will you serve them? Remember Christ's example of humility.
"Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit, but in humility consider others better than yourselves. Each of you should look not only to your own interests, but also to the interests of others. Your attitudes should be the same as the of Christ Jesus." (Philippians 2:3-5)