Friday, July 5, 2019

Take Me Out to the Ball Game!


1 Peter 1:22
Now that by your obedience to the truth you have purified yourselves and have come to a sincere love for other believers, love one another earnestly with all your heart.

My son, Daniel, is an avid baseball fan and a staunch supporter of our home town Atlanta Braves.  He alerts me to a unique celebration that the Braves are holding to honor an amazing gentleman, Walter Banks, who has served as an usher at the home stadium for 55 years, and counting!  It's an 80th birthday bash held Monday of this week, and you can read the full article here.

In the story, penned by Atlanta Journal-Constitution sports writer, Steve Hummer, he states that Banks has worked a great many jobs - at the Georgia Dome and Mercedes-Benz Stadium, at Bobby Dodd Stadium, and 50 years at Macy's.  But he is most lastingly identified with the Braves.  In reality, this impossibly pleasant human being quit being an usher a long time ago, earning a full ambassadorship.  No one has had more interaction with this city's baseball public than Banks.  And he holds the unbreakable record of consecutive days without uttering a mean-spirited word at a ballpark, dating to Atlanta Braves Day 1.

Quite the impressive legacy, isn't it?  Here is how Banks himself describes the way he meets and greets every person at a game with whom he comes into contact:
Give them attention and let them know where they are and show them appreciation and mean it.  If you don't mean it, they'll know it . . . You want the person to look you in the eye, shake your hand and tell you how much they enjoyed themselves.

Now, if that's not a stellar example of loving one's neighbor sincerely, I don't know what is!  Who knows how many hundreds of thousands of Braves fans have been blessed by Banks' warm greetings and attentiveness to their needs?  That number will never be determined, but one thing is for sure:  Walter Banks gives us all a model of kindness and goodness that we should engage in with others on our Christian journey.

And in honor, too, of his longevity with the Braves' organization, this Friday, July 5th, is declared Walter Banks Bobble Head Night.  The first 15,000 lucky fans will be given one as they enter the stadium.

Just another reason for Mr. Banks to flash his genial smile!



Amen!

26 comments:

  1. What a wonderful man. Bless him. As you say, he is "a model of kindness and goodness that we should engage in with others on our Christian journey."

    Two thoughts come to mind:

    Today, many Christians are so in name only. They don't show their Christianity by the way they live and behave.

    When Christ walked on earth, He always paid attention to people one person at a time. The lame, the deaf, the blind, the dumb, even the woman who dared to touch his cloak to be healed ... at all times, He stopped, talked to the individual in private and healed them. He had the power to click His fingers and a whole lot of people would be healed. But He did not do so. He healed and spoke to people one at a time. Personal service. As He still does now. If we let Him.

    God bless.

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    1. You are so right, Victor! Jesus paid particular attention to each person's need, individually and intimately. Mr. Banks has emulated that beautifully, as we all should. May they know we are Christians by our love.
      Love and blessings!

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  2. Very interesting and touching story... Congratulations to Mr. Banks for a job well done and as a role model for others to look up to and aspire to be.

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    1. I'm glad you enjoyed it, Ryan. Funny, but I had no idea what Friday's post would be until my son mentioned the article about this remarkable, and humble, man. Such an answer to prayer for the blog!
      Love and blessings!

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  3. I just want to hug 'your' Mr. Banks SO BIG! What a wonderful embodiment of Christ's teachings. This has blessed me today.

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    1. I had the exact same impulse, Mevely! I'm so glad his story blessed you today.
      Love and blessings!

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  4. What an amazing legacy this man is leaving behind, with hopefully many more years to go! A great celebration for a great man and I'm sure he is being so humble about it all. Love the bobble-head!

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    1. Isn't that bobble-head just the best, Terri? What a lasting tribute to an incredible and loving gentleman.
      Love and blessings!

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  5. This story gives me a warm fuzzy. What a caring gentleman.

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    1. So glad it did, Nells! Interesting side: My son remembers going to a ball game with his grandfather, and meeting Mr. Banks. How cool is that?
      Love and blessings!

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  6. Love this, Martha! Thanks for sharing.

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    1. Glad you liked it, Beckie. Yes, what a fun story to share!
      Love and blessings!

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  7. Aw, what a special man! Such a heartwarming story! I am so thankful you shared. Many blessings to you, sweet friend!

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    1. Yes, Cheryl, a special man, indeed. So glad you enjoyed the story of Mr. Banks!
      Love and blessings!

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  8. I love this, Martha! I especially love his message to people to show genuine kindness. "If you don't mean it, they'll know it." So true! It's one of those lessons that Rev would call "downright Biblical." Thanks, my friend!

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    1. I'm gratified to know that Rev would call what Mr. Banks said "downright Biblical," Deb! That's such a wonderful observation, my friend. Glad you enjoyed this post.
      Love and blessings!

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  9. I love our friendship Martha but you simply have to give up your love affair with THAT team (your son too)! If Tami wasn't my daughter I'd disown her. :) Good article. We can say good things and be remembered much longer than by being negative.

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    1. Lol, Bill, I hear you! Hard to give up the good ol' home team, though, and Mr. Banks' message was certainly worth writing about.
      Love and blessings!

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  10. What a great story! He sounds like such a great man. Thank you for sharing this with us. I hope it was a great night!

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    1. I hope it was a great night for this great man, too, Pamela. So glad you enjoyed the story, and with all your current busyness, took the time to stop by!
      Love and blessings!

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  11. Bless God for those Mr. Banks out there in the world. They shows us how to be real and grateful. thanks for the encouraging story.

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    1. Yes, Betty, what a great example Mr. Banks sets for us all. So glad you enjoyed his story here!
      Love and blessings!

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  12. I read this remotely this weekend and was not able to comment. What an inspiration to us all Mr. Banks is. Living life to the fullest!
    Blessings, My Friend!

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    1. I'm so glad you finally got to read it at home, Loralu, and could leave such a nice comment. Yes, he certainly has lived, and is still living, a full life!
      Love and blessings!

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  13. Oh Martha! What a precious story about a special man! Mr. Banks provides an excellent example of how to treat others well and with kindness. Sometimes Christians get it so very wrong; while non-Christians get it right. Thank you for sharing a bit of Mr. Banks' story.

    Love and blessings!

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    1. My gut tells me, Kim, that Mr. Banks is a Christian man, who is truly living out the message of Christ in this world. Glad you enjoyed the story!
      Love and blessings!

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