ARE YOU LIVING LIFE TO THE FULLEST?
One night, a Dodgers farm club coached by Tommy Lasorda was leading
Tucson by one run in the eighth inning, but Tucson had the bases
loaded with two outs. According to Don Martin in TEAM THINK (Penguin
books, Ltd., 1993), Lasorda decided to pep up his pitcher, a
left-hander named Bobby O'Brien. Lasorda slowly walked out to the
mound and said, "Bobby, if the heavens opened up right now and you
could hear the voice of the Big Dodger in the sky and he said to you,
'Bobby, you're going to die and come up to heaven, and this is the
last batter you're ever going to face,' how would you like the meet
the Lord, getting this man out or letting him get a hit from you?"
"I'd want to face him getting this guy out," O'Brien replied.
"That's right," said Lasorda, "you would. Now, how do you know that
after you throw the next pitch you're not going to die? This might
really be the last hitter you're ever going to face and if it is,
you'll want to face the Lord getting him out."
Lasorda figured it was just about the best pep talk ever and he
strutted confidently back to the dugout. O'Brien wound up and threw
the pitch. The batter lined a base hit to right field, knocking in two
Lasorda was beside himself. "Bobby, what happened?" he asked.
"It's like this, Skip," said O'Brien. "You had me so worried about
dying I couldn't concentrate on the batter!"
Many people are worried about dying. Their worry can keep them from
fully enjoying life in the present. But for other people, the
knowledge that they will die someday actually motivates them to live
Dr. Elisabeth Kubler-Ross, who has extensively studied death and
dying, put it like this: "It's only when we truly know and understand
that we have a limited time on earth - and that we have no way of
knowing when our time is up, we will then begin to live each day to
the fullest, as if it was the only one we had."
It's true, we have no way of knowing when our time is up. But we have
today. Will you live it as if it were the only day you had?
By Steve Goodier © 2004