This year two important holidays fall on consecutive days (a couple months ago two other important holidays fell on the SAME day, but I wrote about that in another post)
Of course I am talking about Easter (or Resurrection Sunday as some folks like to call it) on April 8 and Opening Day (or the Colorado Rockies First Home Game of the Season as technically correct folks like to call it) on April 9.
Opening Day is my favorite day on the sports calendar. It signifies everything as being new and fresh. Everything in the stadium from the restrooms to batting helmets are scrubbed clean and polished up in anticipation of a new year. All disappointments and failures from last year are forgotten. Every team is 0-0 and every player is batting 1.000. No errors have been committed and there's potential for everybody to have a career year. For the next 6 months, 750 players from 30 teams will grind through 2430 games. Many will get tired, injured or demoted. But on Opening Day everybody is rested, healthy and full of hope.
And for the Christian, Easter is a reminder of many of the same things. Jesus rose from the dead to give every one of his children a fresh start. We no longer have to be weighed down by the failures of the past. We have been scrubbed clean and there is no longer a record of our past mistakes. Life is a long grind through the disappointing and the ordinary, but the resurrection makes every day a renewal of God's grace.
One of the most amazing events I've personally witness happened 19 years to the day before this year's Opening Day. As the first Rockies batter to ever take the plate in Colorado, Eric Young sent a long ball over the left field fence. That moment is forever etched in my memory, but that "miracle" is meaningless compared to the real miracle of an empty tomb and eternal hope.
This should be a good weekend.
"There is no sports event like Opening Day of baseball, the sense of beating back the forces of darkness and the National Football League."--George Vecsey
"It's like Christmas except it's warmer."-- Pete Rose on Opening Day
he saved us, not because of righteous things we had done, but because of his mercy. He saved us through the washing of rebirth and renewal by the Holy Spirit,”—Titus 3:5
We were therefore buried with him through baptism into death in order that, just as Christ was raised from the dead through the glory of the Father, we too may live a new life.” Romans 6:4