08 Dec Honduras does love baseball..especially the MLB players!
I am on the plane returning and reflecting on another amazing trip with ICON sports. This is the second year they have traveled with us and it is hard for me to put into words how their sweet passions and gifts are so genuinely displayed. These guys all play for the MLB. . From different teams all over the US and Canada. . Different levels. . From rookie right out of High School to players in the World Series.. (New York Mets, LA Angels, Detroit Tigers, LA Dodgers, Texas Rangers, New York Yankees, and Toronto Blue Jays) It was so cool for all of them to bond with each other over common interests. . They may be playing against each other during the season. .
But in Honduras the playing field is different. . .they are just guys with huge hearts. . They love Jesus. . And they just want to pour out their love on the children. . Most of them are extremely tall and the way they pick up the kids and toss them in the air, hug their necks, and genuinely look into their eyes gives you the insight into their hearts. Not because they are considered important because of the teams they play for. . But because they are important in God’s eyes. . They aren’t super human or worthy of worship. . They are all someone’s children, someone’s relatives, someone’s friend. . People on this earth trying to do the right thing. . Just like we all are. . Just like the kids and the people of Honduras are. . . All equal in God’s eyes. . Isn’t it sad the world doesn’t see it that way?
Truly these guys are different. . Why? Because their platform is larger.. because of their jobs they can be heard by more people. . Loved by more people. . And also criticized and hated by more people. . How? . . Because the fans have put them on pedestals and expect them to be perfect. . Play perfect. . All the time. . Or that they should fit into a fans personal beliefs. . Think about Tim Tebow and all the negative publicity he got because of his faith. . Does the Bible tell us this will happen?. .Oh yeah. . BUT. . How fair is that? The pressures they face. . The criticism they endure. . The money they make. . These are all things that could give them a huge ego. . Or a hardened heart. . Or a need for an off season hermit lifestyle. . And it does that to so many of the pros. .
But not these guys. . They are different and ICON management looks for athletes who are different. . Who want to give back. . Who understand how lucky and blessed they are. . Who want to set positive examples for children. . Who always play their hardest. . Who try to handle adversities like injuries through faith and trust in their creator. . . Who will make a positive impact because of their platform. . Who can turn injury rehab time into more time for Bible studies and community service. . (One of the player testimonies to the kids)
Each of their testimonies are different. . But they are all filled with hard work, determination, faith through their injuries and their tough times. . Oh what an inspiration they are to the H2H team. . Me, Shelton, Gabi, Gabriel, and Alex. To see young men who understand the gifts they are given and know how to set the kind of example a pro athlete should strive to set. . .
What we saw this past week was a team filled with fun loving, hard working, easy going, kid adoring hearts willing to love without conditions. . . Everyone who came in contact with them were blessed. . . The common thread that runs through them is now a love for Honduras not just baseball. . Memories of a week together on the SAME team. . Memories of Suyapa children laying hands on them and praying for them. . Memories of beautiful browned eyed kids who look up to them as soldiers for Christ. . . Memories of a building they poured the foundation for in 2014 and in 2015 is overflowing with children. . . H2H is extremely thankful for their humble hearts . . . ICON sports mission team. . We have been blessed by your humbleness and generosity. . Our hearts were touched. . You are all a part of our testimonies now. . The worldly side of me is giddy with excitement. . I mean really? We just spent a week hugging on MLB players who have huge endorsements from Nike, Under Armour and New Balance. . They are paid lots to represent them. . . Their fan base is huge. . And little ole us got to witness their hearts and theirs souls?. ..We can hardly wait to watch you all play in 2016. . Not just because of your God given talent. . But because we truly know your hearts!! (And your 4 square talents too)
And…a SPECIAL THANK YOU to Nike and New Balance for the donated backpacks and shoes which were distributed by the players they endorse!!