Thursday, August 2, 2018


The great baseball player Carl Yastrzemski is haunted by a critical failure in the final game of the 1978 American League play-offs. His Red Sox team was facing the N.Y. Yankees. Goose Gosich was on the mound for the Yankees. In the ninth inning with the go-ahead run on base, Yastrzemski was at bat. With the count of two strikes and two balls, Gosich threw a hard fast ball, high and tight. Yastrzemski swung, and missed. The Yankees won the pennant.

The late great Speaker of the House, Tip O’Neil, claimed that during the mid-1980s he had an audience with the Pope in Rome. After they had talked for a while, the Pope leaned toward him and whispered, “Tip, why did Yastrzemski swing at that high pitch in the ’78 play-offs?”

While Tip’s story might be apocryphal, it is true that failures of the past can haunt us and steal our joy. So, these words from Psalm 103 are truly good news: “As far as the east is from the west, so far has he (God) removed our transgressions from us.”