Early in his MLB career, Juan Pierre made his name as one of top batters and base stealers in the National League. During those same years, he also became a Christian—and when he later experienced intermittent slumps and long stretches sitting on the bench, it was his newfound faith that, according to him, gave him the motivation to don his cleats and keep performing.

Now an on-air analyst for the MLB Network, Pierre is still proud of his accomplishments on the field. Meanwhile, his spiritual transformation has led to a quiet life of service out of the spotlight—one that he says is just as valuable a witness to his teammates past and present.

On this week’s episode of The Calling, Pierre joins CT editor Richard Clark to share how his love of baseball led to his conversion, how his faith inspired him to be a better player, and why he says service—not performance—is the root of his contentment.

Click the play button above to listen in.

On the limits of good sportsmanship: “You have a lot of good guys around. In the matters of eternity, that doesn’t get you anywhere. Being a good guy doesn’t get you saved.”

On finding faith through his sport: “God used baseball to save me from a lot of stuff. And then he used baseball to bring me to himself.”

On balancing service and family life: “It’s all missional. It’s easy for us to have a ‘family night.’ But what if this person doesn’t have anybody? You have to invite them over. Which invades on your territory—but this is what God calls us to do.”

On living an openly faithful life: “We’re the only way to make an invisible God visible.”

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The Calling is produced by Richard Clark and Morgan Lee, and edited by Jonathan Clauson.

Theme music by Lee Rosevere, used under Creative Commons 4.0.