In the film The Natural, baseball hero Roy Hobbs befriends young Bobby Savoy, the team bat boy, a friendship bonded when Roy helps Bobby carve his own bat. The film's tense climax finds Roy at the plate, bottom of the ninth, two outs, in the biggest game of the year. A pitch (fouled off) shatters his bat, and-you saw it coming-here's Bobby, offering his "Savoy Special." Roy smiles, takes the bat, and on the next pitch smacks a game-winning homer.
I like that story not only because I love baseball and happy endings, but for a deeper reason as well: It works as an analogy for the kind of teamwork so necessary between pastor and people. Their partnership, each helping the other, is a key ingredient to the success of church ministry.
Pastors are people-helpers. That's our job. We're trained for it. There are ample opportunities. Most of the time we're even good at it. But let's be honest-pastors need help, too. Without it, ministry can become lonely and joyless. ...1