And let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us,fixing our eyes on Jesus, the pioneer and perfecter of faith. Hebrews 12:2
Joe Dimaggio was one of the immortals. He played for the New York Yankees from 1936-1951. He served in the U.S. Army during World War II, and he lost three seasons- what could have been very productive baseball seasons- to the war. My dad thought he was about the best he ever saw, as did many of the men in my dad’s generation. Joltin’ Joe was the graceful center fielder who glided to the ball. Yogi Berra, who saw so many of Dimaggio’s games from behind home plate, said he never saw Dimaggio dive for a ball. He was able to get a jump on fly balls and run to the right place.
I am thinking about this legend of baseball because I love the fact that he always gave his best effort. He was quoted as saying, “There might be a kid in the stands seeing me play for the first time, and I will not let him down”. Indeed, Dimaggio had a great deal of pride in his craft, and he would never let anyone see him slacking, nor even see him display a negative emotion. It was rare film footage when he actually kicked at the dirt after he was robbed of a hit by an incredible catch by Al Gionfriddo in a World Series game.
Joe Dimaggio retired from baseball just short of his 37th birthday. He was slowed by chronic injuries, and he chose to turn down another $100,000 contract (his was the first) to return to play at less than a “Dimaggio effort”.
I am certain that there are plenty of people who always give their best effort, even to the end of their career. I hold up Joe Dimaggio as a standard for us to emulate. We are bound by integrity put up our best effort all the time, even to the end.
I love it.
Prayer: Lord, continue to give us strength to give everything we have for your work, Amen