Advent 12/23/22 Sacred Knowing

Glory Above Earth and Heaven Friday, December 23

Psalm 148 (NRSV)
Praise the Lord!
Praise the Lord from the heavens, praise him in the heights!
Praise him, all his angels; praise him, all his host!
Praise him, sun and moon; praise him, all you shining stars! Praise him, you highest heavens and you waters above the heavens!
Let them praise the name of the Lord, for he commanded and they were created. He established them forever and ever;
he fixed their bounds, which cannot be passed.[a] Praise the Lord from the earth,
you sea monsters and all deeps, fire and hail, snow and frost,
stormy wind fulfilling his command!
Mountains and all hills, fruit trees and all cedars!
Wild animals and all cattle, creeping things and flying birds!
Kings of the earth and all peoples, princes and all rulers of the earth! Young men and women alike,
old and young together!
Let them praise the name of the Lord, for his name alone is exalted;
his glory is above earth and heaven. He has raised up a horn for his people,
praise for all his faithful,
for the people of Israel who are close to him.
Praise the Lord!


Psalm 148 is about praising the Lord’s glory, and if anyone ever had reason to praise God it is Trey Mancini.

He is a professional major league baseball player who after his fourth major league season, after having the best year of his career with 35 home runs, 97 runs batted in, a .291 batting average and 106 runs scored at age 28 was diagnosed with stage three colon cancer. He spent the next year away from baseball in treatment. After going into remission, he returned to the game in 2021 but could not get back to his former form with the Baltimore Orioles.

Before the trade deadline this year he was traded to the Houston Astros to give them a little extra power. He did his best but couldn’t get his bat going. The Astros progressed through the playoffs and were facing the Philadelphia Phillies in a closely contested World Series. In the fifth game with the teams tied at two games each, the Astros were holding on to a one run lead when first baseman Yuli Gurriel was injured. Trey went into the game at first base in the eighth inning, even though that was a position he normally didn’t play.

Kyle Schwarber, one of baseball’s most feared sluggers came to the plate with the winning run on second base and two outs. Schwarber lined a ground ball down the first base line. Trey went one step to his left and was able to grab the ball and step on first for the third out-- normally a ball down the line goes for a double. It was even more remarkable in that he hadn’t taken any infield practice before the game.

That was one of several good plays by the Astros’ players as they went on to win the game but his teammates voted him player of the game. Trey Mancini had good reason to “praise the name of the Lord” because “his glory is above earth and heaven.”

What do you have to praise God and give Him glory for during this Advent season?

-Ronald Griffitts

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