Chase Headley: ‘I Want Christ Touching All Aspects of My Life’ (Gospel Light Minute #232)

Chase Headley
Chase Headley

He is a professional baseball player, playing the position of third baseman and as a Switch-hitter for the New York Yankees. He began playing professional baseball for the San Diego Padres in 2007. Prior to that, he played baseball in college for the Pacific Tigers and the Tennessee Volunteers. In 2012, he led the National League in RBIs (runs batted in) and received the Silver Slugger Award and Golden Glove Award for his efforts.

He said of his faith, “If you put a circle that represents Christ, in the center of a pie, that represents life. Any way you slice it, the circle will always touch a part of that slice. That’s how I try to live my life. I try to have Christ touch all aspects of my life.”

His favorite Bible verse is 2 Timothy 1:7, “For God has not given us a spirit of fear and timidity, but of power, love, and self-discipline.”

He says of this verse that it, “Encompasses what I want to do in my Christian walk. Too many times Christians are portrayed as weak, (and they think) ‘I can’t be a man anymore or I can’t stand up for myself.’ This verse says (that) through God, in Christ, I have power to stand up as a Christian, to love even when it’s hard to love the unlovable, and to have the self-discipline to resist the temptations we face daily.

“Professional athletes have a tremendous platform. I try to use that platform; I look for opportunities to speak out about my faith. Jesus has changed my life. My goal is to have Jesus be the center of everything. I can worship Jesus by the way I play baseball and in how I interact with teammates, opponents, umpires and fans. I try to let my life reflect my faith in Christ.”

His name is Chase Headley. Continue reading “Chase Headley: ‘I Want Christ Touching All Aspects of My Life’ (Gospel Light Minute #232)”

Nick Hundley: ‘No Matter What is Going On, Jesus is in Control’ (Gospel Light Minute #213)

Nick Hundley
Nick Hundley

He is an American professional baseball catcher for the Colorado Rockies of Major League Baseball. He played three seasons with the University of Arizona Wildcats and was named by Baseball America to the second All-America team in 2005. He has also played in Major League Baseball for the San Diego Padres and Baltimore Orioles. Continue reading “Nick Hundley: ‘No Matter What is Going On, Jesus is in Control’ (Gospel Light Minute #213)”

Matt Holliday: Christ’s Coming is ‘What Gets Me Excited’ (Gospel Light Minute #202)

Matt Holliday
Matt Holliday

He is a professional baseball player with the St. Louis Cardinals of Major League Baseball. He plays the position of left fielder. He and the Cardinals won the World Series in 2011 and he is considered a major part of the team’s success. He is well known for his baserunning, hitting, and leadership abilities. Previously, he played for the Colorado Rockies and the Oakland Athletics. He has been selected as an All-Star 6 times. In addition, he has been recognized with four Silver Slugger Awards and a National League Championship Series Most Valuable Player Award.

He said of his faith, “My walk with the Lord has come about very gradually. I had always recognized there was God, but I did not know about Jesus or how to have a relationship with Him. My dad was head baseball coach at Oklahoma State University. We did not go to church much because my dad was always working – including on weekends – and we were usually going to the stadium to support him and the team. However, I feel I was raised in a great family. I had an extremely blessed childhood.

Beginning in my rookie season, I had a lot of people come into my life sharing their faith with me. There were individuals who mentored me and helped me realize I needed Jesus, and that the only way to true life is through Jesus. My faith in Jesus has shaped how I handle my family, how I am a friend, how I am a teammate, how I handle all the things I do in my life and how I list my priorities. How you represent Jesus in the way you live your life is the best way to share Christ. Jesus puts all things in proper perspective. It has allowed me to live a lot freer.

I like the book of Job. Much of Job is about trials and struggles, but also about understanding that God is God and we are not. The tattoo on my arm is Job 38:4: ‘Where were you when I laid the earth’s foundation? Tell Me, if you understand.’ We are not going to understand His ways sometimes, but we must remain faithful as Job. Job 36:26 says, How great is God – beyond our understanding!’ Playing this game offers struggles at times. You have anxiety when you put pressure on yourself to perform, as well as the struggle to not get caught up in your worth or who you are as a pro baseball player.

Players like everyone else often feel the need for approval from other people besides Jesus. For me now, the most important – and only – thing that really matters is Jesus accepts me. The future for a Christian is eternity with the King! I see my relationship with Christ leading me where I know I will spend eternity worshipping Him. It does not make your life perfect, but it allows you to have a perspective that, at the end of the day, Christ will be coming to take us to be with Him forever. That is something that gets me excited.”

His name is Matt Holliday.

This is the “Chief of Sinners,” Daniel Whyte III, president of Gospel Light Society International, reminding you of what the Bible says, that “Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners” like you and me. Just as Matt Holliday gave his life to Christ, may I encourage you to do the same. Here is how:

1. Accept the fact that you are a sinner, and that you have broken God’s law. The Bible says in Ecclesiastes 7:20: “For there is not a just man upon earth that doeth good, and sinneth not.” Romans 3:23 reads: “For all have sinned and come short of the glory of God.” In fact, I am the chief of sinners, so don’t think that you’re alone.

2. Accept the fact that there is a penalty for sin. The Bible states in Romans 6:23: “For the wages of sin is death…”

3. Accept the fact that you are on the road to hell. Jesus Christ said in Matthew 10:28: “And fear not them which kill the body, but are not able to kill the soul: but rather fear him which is able to destroy both soul and body in hell.” The Bible says in Revelation 21:8: “But the fearful, and unbelieving, and the abominable, and murderers, and whoremongers and sorcerers, and idolaters, and all liars, shall have their part in the lake which burneth with fire and brimstone: which is the second death.”

4. Accept the fact that you cannot do anything to save yourself! The Bible states in Ephesians 2: 8, 9: “For by grace are ye saved through faith: and that not of yourselves: it is a gift of God. Not of works, lest any man should boast.”

5. Accept the fact that God loves you more than you love yourself, and that He wants to save you from hell. Jesus Christ said in John 3:16, “For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life.”

6. With these facts in mind, please repent of your sins, believe on the Lord Jesus Christ and pray and ask Him to come into your heart and save you this very moment. The Bible states in the book of Romans 10:9, 13: “That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised Him from the dead, thou shalt be saved.”

“For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.”

Dear friend, if you are willing to believe on the Lord Jesus Christ for salvation, please pray with me this simple prayer: Heavenly Father, I realize that I am a sinner and that I have done some bad things in my life. For Jesus Christ sake, please forgive me of my sins. I now believe with all of my heart that Jesus Christ died for me, was buried, and rose again. Lord Jesus, please come into my heart and save my soul and change my life today. Amen.

If you believed in your heart that Jesus Christ died on the cross, was buried, and rose again, allow me to say, congratulations on doing the most important thing in life and that is accepting Jesus Christ as your Lord and Saviour! For more information to help you grow in your newfound faith in Christ, go to Gospel Light Society.com and read “What To Do After You Enter Through the Door”. Jesus Christ said in John 10:9, “I am the door: by me if any man enter in, he shall be saved, and shall go in and out, and find pasture.”

Remember, friend, Believe by faith. Share the faith. and Keep the faith!

Jeff Bianchi On How he Made his Faith in Christ his Own (Gospel Light Minute #201)

Jeff Bianchi
Jeff Bianchi

He is an American professional baseball shortstop for the Boston Red Sox of Major League Baseball. After attending high school in Pennsylvania, he was drafted by the Kansas City Royals in the second round, 50th overall, of the 2005 Major League Baseball Draft. He previously played for the Milwaukee Brewers. He was also a Topps Short-season/ Rookie All-Star.

He said of his faith, “I grew up going to church with my family every Sunday, but that’s all it was to me – just going to church on Sunday. I had awesome Christian friends who are still some of my closest friends that I’m in contact with to this day. While I was in high school, I started to understand the Christian message and why Jesus came. For the next few years I thought that I had enough basic knowledge to get by, but I just kind of put my faith on the back burner.

“I’ve now been married to my wife for six and a half years, and I started dating my wife as a senior in high school. One day she basically told me, ‘Hey, unless you start following the Lord, I don’t think I can date you anymore.’ At the time, it was my first year playing professional ball, and I knew that I had to start making my faith my own. I realized after I started to dig into the Bible that Jesus is after a relationship with me, and it’s not just about going to church on Sunday. God wants a lot more, He wants all of me. When I realized that, I think that’s when I started to understand the Christian faith.

“My favorite Bible verse is James 1:2-4. It says, ‘Consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance. Let perseverance finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything.’ I memorized that verse, it really spoke to me the first time I heard it. I’ve gone through a lot in this game of baseball. I’ve had two arm surgeries, shoulder surgery, elbow surgery and a number of back problems, so I’ve had a lot of time away from the game being hurt. It doesn’t matter what I’m going through because I’m focused on Christ.

“Baseball will come and go. I could be done with this game tomorrow, but Christ lasts forever and He’s the reason why I’m living and playing this game. He has allowed me to come back from those injuries. From here on out I’m not taking things for granted. I think it helps me do things the right way because I know my faith is in something greater than the game of baseball. It’s in Christ, and knowing that my faith is in Christ alone helps keep me from doing the things that you might see other people fall into.”

His name is Jeff Bianchi.

Fernando Tatis: God is the ‘Real Deal’; ‘It’s the Best Relationship Ever’ (Gospel Light Minute #189)

Fernando Tatis
Fernando Tatis

He is a former professional baseball player. Over his 11 year career, he played for the Texas Rangers, the St. Louis Cardinals, and the New York Mets as well as the Montreal Expos and the Baltimore Orioles. He currently holds the Major League record for RBIs in an inning, becoming the only player in MLB history to hit two gran slam home runs in one inning during a 1999 game. He played his last game in 2010 before officially retiring in 2014. In 2008, he received The Sporting News Comeback Player of the Year Award for the National League and was named to the Dominican Republic national baseball team for the 2009 World Baseball Classic.

In an interview with CBN, he said of his faith, “In those difficult moments in my life, I pray. I pray and continue to pray. I know that God has the answer. Not in the moment that I want, but I know in His moment, because I know that His moment is going to be the right moment….I’m different, because I’m a Christian. Every Christian should be different. Faith is everything. If you put God in your heart and ask Him, ‘I want the real deal,’ God is going to answer you. He’s going to support you. It’s the best relationship ever. More than your wife, your mother, you father. Jesus is going to support you in every moment of your life.”

His name is Fernando Tatis. Continue reading “Fernando Tatis: God is the ‘Real Deal’; ‘It’s the Best Relationship Ever’ (Gospel Light Minute #189)”

Madison Bumgarner: ‘Jesus Christ Means Everything to Me. He is My Saviour and I Live for Him.’ (Gospel Light Minute #172)

Madison Bumgarner
Madison Bumgarner

He is a major league baseball pitcher for the San Francisco Giants. He and the Giants have won three World Series championships in 2010, 2012, and 2014. He was named the Most Valuable Player of the 2014 World Series. He is a two time MLB All-Star and won the Willie Mac Award in 2014. In 2010, he became the fourth-youngest pitcher to start and win a World Series game as well as the youngest to make a scoreless start of six innings or more. He holds several MLB records including the record for longest save in a World Series and the record for most World Series wins through age 25.

In an interview with CBN, he said of his faith, “If it weren’t for my faith, there is no way I would be where I am at today. My faith is a really big part of my career and my life. I married a Christian girl as my wife and it has been great. It has helped me along the way so much. I know I wouldn’t be where I am at now without my faith. The biggest thing I want people to know about me is that I am a believer, I’m a Christian, not just that I’m a baseball player or any of the other stuff I like to do. You’ll see me and I will always go out there and kneel down and pray before the game. I try to lead that lifestyle and make it so people can recognize that. Jesus Christ means everything to me. He is my Saviour and I live for Him. As a Christian, you have a sense of peace. I grew up in a church at home, got saved when I was 16, and ever since then I have been trying to live for Jesus Christ. That’s the main thing. I don’t want to live for myself; I want to live for Him.”

His name is Madison Bumgarner. Continue reading “Madison Bumgarner: ‘Jesus Christ Means Everything to Me. He is My Saviour and I Live for Him.’ (Gospel Light Minute #172)”

Bobby Evans On his Relationship with Christ and how it Influences his Family, his Marriage, and his Work in Baseball (Gospel Light minute #171)

Bobby Evans
Bobby Evans

He is the assistant general manager for the San Francisco Giants. He played an important role in helping the organization win two World Series titles in 2010 and 2012. He also assisted the Giants in being named the Topps Organization of the Year in both 2009 and 2011 and the Baseball America Organization of the Year in 2010. Along with negotiating all major league player contracts, he helps to acquire free agents and signing minor league talent. In 2012, he received the Bowie Kuhn Award, which is presented annually to an individual, team or organization which demonstrates support of the chapel program in professional baseball.

He became a Christian at 7-years-old and for the past 21 years, he has been a faithful member of First Baptist Church in San Francisco. He has served on the leadership board of First Baptist for 18 years, and he makes worship attendance with his family a priority.

In an interview with the Baptist Press, he said of his faith, “You want your life to point people to Christ. It starts for me with my own relationship with Christ. That’s going to direct and dictate what influence I have for Christ in my family, in my marriage and in the workplace. In baseball, as in other businesses, following Jesus and being a faithful church member is hard, but it’s going to all start with where I am in my relationship with Christ.”

His name is Bobby Evans.

This is the “Chief of Sinners,” Daniel Whyte III, president of Gospel Light Society International, reminding you of what the Bible says, that “Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners” like you and me. Just as Bobby Evans gave his life to Christ, may I encourage you to do the same. Here is how:

1. Accept the fact that you are a sinner, and that you have broken God’s law. The Bible says in Ecclesiastes 7:20: “For there is not a just man upon earth that doeth good, and sinneth not.” Romans 3:23 reads: “For all have sinned and come short of the glory of God.” In fact, I am the chief of sinners, so don’t think that you’re alone.

2. Accept the fact that there is a penalty for sin. The Bible states in Romans 6:23: “For the wages of sin is death…”

3. Accept the fact that you are on the road to hell. Jesus Christ said in Matthew 10:28: “And fear not them which kill the body, but are not able to kill the soul: but rather fear him which is able to destroy both soul and body in hell.” The Bible says in Revelation 21:8: “But the fearful, and unbelieving, and the abominable, and murderers, and whoremongers and sorcerers, and idolaters, and all liars, shall have their part in the lake which burneth with fire and brimstone: which is the second death.”

4. Accept the fact that you cannot do anything to save yourself! The Bible states in Ephesians 2: 8, 9: “For by grace are ye saved through faith: and that not of yourselves: it is a gift of God. Not of works, lest any man should boast.”

5. Accept the fact that God loves you more than you love yourself, and that He wants to save you from hell. Jesus Christ said in John 3:16, “For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life.”

6. With these facts in mind, please repent of your sins, believe on the Lord Jesus Christ and pray and ask Him to come into your heart and save you this very moment. The Bible states in the book of Romans 10:9, 13: “That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised Him from the dead, thou shalt be saved.”

“For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.”

Dear friend, if you are willing to believe on the Lord Jesus Christ for salvation, please pray with me this simple prayer: Heavenly Father, I realize that I am a sinner and that I have done some bad things in my life. For Jesus Christ sake, please forgive me of my sins. I now believe with all of my heart that Jesus Christ died for me, was buried, and rose again. Lord Jesus, please come into my heart and save my soul and change my life today. Amen.

If you believed in your heart that Jesus Christ died on the cross, was buried, and rose again, allow me to say, congratulations on doing the most important thing in life and that is accepting Jesus Christ as your Lord and Saviour! For more information to help you grow in your newfound faith in Christ, go to Gospel Light Society.com and read “What To Do After You Enter Through the Door”. Jesus Christ said in John 10:9, “I am the door: by me if any man enter in, he shall be saved, and shall go in and out, and find pasture.”

Remember, friend, Believe by faith. Share the faith. and Keep the faith!

Torii Hunter: Faith in Christ ‘Allows Me to Go On, Day to Day, and Not Worry About Life’ (Gospel Light Minute #169)

Torii Hunter
Torii Hunter

He is a professional major league baseball player. He plays right field for the Detroit Tigers. Before that, he played for the Minnesota Twins and the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim. He is a five-time All-Star. He won nine consecutive Gold Glove Awards as an outfielder and has won two Silver Slugger Awards.

As a child, he grew up in a neighborhood of crime, poverty, drugs, and gangs. His father was addicted to crack cocaine most of his life and his brother joined a gang. However, he found safety and hope in church due to the influence of his mother and grandmother. This early instillation of faith propelled him to find strength and hope in Jesus Christ and through the Bible.

In an interview with Sports Spectrum, he said of the difficult time he faced growing up that, “The Holy Spirit always was with me and helped me make the right decisions. Sometimes, I’d do some stupid stuff, anyway, and I always paid the consequences. I wasn’t always right. But the more I went through, the closer I got to Him, and the stronger I got to survive in that city.”

He went on to say, “Without Jesus, I promise you, I couldn’t do anything. In everything I do, I ask Him to guide me. Some guys who really don’t have faith actually feel like they want to commit suicide. My faith allows me to go on, day to day, and not worry about what’s on and off the field.”

He currently serves as a mentor to young people and other young baseball players trying to make it to the major leagues. He said, “Anytime I receive something, I try to give it back. That is a blessing, to be a giver. Some people are just takers. I want to be a giver and not a receiver. It’s just about passing the torch. That’s what I want to do.”

His name is Torii Hunter. Continue reading “Torii Hunter: Faith in Christ ‘Allows Me to Go On, Day to Day, and Not Worry About Life’ (Gospel Light Minute #169)”

Major League Baseball Pitcher, Billy Wagner: Sold-Out to God (Gospel Light Minute #166)

Billy Wagner
Billy Wagner

He is a former major league baseball relief pitcher. Nicknamed “Billy the Kid”, he pitched for the Houston Astros from 1995 to 2003, the Philadelphia Phillies from 2004 to 2005, the New York Mets from 2006 to 2009, the Boston Red Sox in 2009, and the Atlanta Braves in 2010. He is one of the few relief pitchers with a total of 400 saves in his career. In 2012, he was inducted into the Virginia Sports Hall of Fame. Seven times he was selected to All-Star teams, and in 2003, he pitched a combined no-hitter.

Though he was born right-handed, after breaking his right arm twice in accidents as a child, he taught himself to throw baseballs using his left arm. Raised in his grandparent’s Christian home, he accepted Jesus Christ into his life at age 12. In an interview with CBN, he said, “I was saved when I was, I believe I was 12 years old. My grandparents had that kind of work ethic and religion and faith that kinda kept me on track.”

When he began playing with his left arm, he said, “God has given me a left arm that has given me a pedestal to be someone that can help [people] better themselves in the faith. Being a Christian I’ve been able to sit there and say [that] this is a learning experience. I said some things when I was out on the mound, I acted in a way when I was out on the mound that is not what God had wanted, but being able to be forgiven and to repent shows that that is what being a Christian is all about.”

“Baseball is just fantasy. It’s a short-lived life, and I have a long life with God. That’s most important, and if I take that for granted, everything that He has graced me with, He can take away. God wants you to be competitive for Him too, so being competitive is the easy part. It’s the balance of knowing who you are and what you want to be. Once I realized as an athlete what was important and what wasn’t, then, I think you’re able to sell out to God.”

He went on to say, “I live a very blessed and graced life with what He’s blessed me to have. So when I think of my career I think solely of what God has given me and blessed me with, and know that [while I’m retired now] I get to go home and live a second chapter that is blessed. My biggest goal and what I want people to see in me is that I love the Lord and He’s the answer. He’s the way, and He’s the rock. All you have to do is lean on Him and know you don’t have to worry. He’s gonna give you that peace.”

His name is Billy Wagner. Continue reading “Major League Baseball Pitcher, Billy Wagner: Sold-Out to God (Gospel Light Minute #166)”

Adrian Gonzalez: ‘Christ is What You Are Searching For’ (Gospel Light Minute #158)

Adrian Gonzalez
Adrian Gonzalez

He is a professional baseball first baseman for the Los Angeles Dodgers. He was picked first overall in the 2000 Major League Baseball Draft by the Florida Marlins. Before the Dodgers, he played for the Texas Rangers from 2004-2005, the San Diego Padres from 2006-2010, and the Boston Red Sox from 2011-2012. He was named Most Valuable Player four times in 2008-2011. He won the Silver Slugger Award in 2011 and the Rawlings Gold Glove Award in 2008, 2009, and 2011. Together with his wife, they created a Foundation, which is focused on empowering underprivileged youth in areas of athletics, education and health.

In an interview with BeyondtheUltimate.org, he said of his faith, “I grew up going to church two to three times a month, but never really got to know the [Bible] or have a relationship with Christ. In 2003, just being around a bunch of guys who are [Christians] on the team, and going to baseball chapels and Bible studies off the field, I really started wanting that relationship and started trying to understand what it was about. My wife, Betsy, had a strong relationship [with Christ] at the time, so as a married couple we decided we should have our relationship with the Lord be the foundation of our marriage. Since [Betsy and I] have been in baseball, we put ourselves around people who will help us grow in our relationship with the Lord. It’s in the Bible that belief in Christ is what you are searching for and need. For us, Christ really has transformed our lives and we couldn’t be any happier, we are content with whatever happens. We look toward Christ to fulfill us.”

He went further to say, “[Christ has given me] a different perspective in life – in my marriage, in my attitude on the field, and in everything else, including [trying to be] the best husband to my wife as possible and striving to be the best person I can be. You see yourself in a different position. You don’t put yourself first, you put yourself last. That’s [something] I never thought I could do until I became a [Christian]. Now I try to live [as God would have me to live] every day and to let others see [that] so others can come to Christ. Anytime I can share in public, I try to take advantage of that as Christ would want me to do. I try to do what I can to lead others to Christ. I have success in baseball, but I know that is because of the Lord. I know my preparing and my hard work definitely play a part, but it would not be done without Christ.”

His name is Adrian Gonzalez.