Whether or not you’re a baseball fan, the game can teach you a lot about life. Like a tough pitcher in baseball, life often throws curveballs: unexpected bills, surprise setbacks, and unpredictable relationships. Like baseball, life can be fun and exciting some days but feel ordinary and slow-paced other days. And then there are the moments it feels like you’ve been hit by a fastball going 100 miles an hour.
You might even have moments when it feels like everyone you care about is relying on you to make the “big play” to win the game.
If you don’t follow baseball, you might not care too much about who wins a baseball game—but you probably want to win at life. So let’s explore four truths about baseball that can also help you win at life. They might not improve your batting average, but they can help you find daily direction, purpose, and inspiration.
What does it mean to “win at life”?
Who comes to mind when you think about winning in life? Maybe it’s a celebrity, an athlete, or an influencer whose fame and resources allow them to live in luxury.
While they might have more stuff than most of us, being wealthy doesn’t equal winning at life. Why? Because the point of life isn’t to gain more resources, influence, and power. There’s nothing wrong with having those things, but they don’t lead to lasting peace on their own.
We need to understand the “game” of life.
Imagine an all-star baseball team stepping onto an ice rink to play hockey against a professional hockey team. Are they going to be successful? Probably not. Why? Because they’re playing the wrong game.
If we want to win at life, we need to understand the game we’re playing. The Bible tells us our purpose in life: to live and love like Jesus. We do that through consistently sharing what we have with others, forgiving people who hurt us, and helping others get to know God. That’s our purpose. So as we seek opportunities to “win,” let’s remember the game we’re playing.
4 Truths to Help You Win at Life
These four truths can give you a starting point as you seek Jesus daily. They’ll provide opportunities to seek wholeness, contentment, and lasting peace.
1. You can’t win with a bad attitude.
Sometimes life throws a curveball—something unexpected, unplanned, and completely unwanted. It might look like a bad diagnosis or a behavioral problem with your child. It might be your car breaking down or being laid off from your job.
How do you react when you’re facing something unexpected? In the moment, it’s common to feel flustered or frustrated—we might even feel a little defeated. But what happens next?
One key to winning at baseball—and in life—is a good attitude when the unexpected happens.
Your attitude is like a pair of glasses. It changes how you see the world around you. A person with a bad attitude might tell themselves lies like “the world is against me” or “I can never succeed.” Those lies can get in our heads and lead us to give up on our goals, to feel too timid to pursue new opportunities, or to give up on healthy relationships.
A bad attitude causes us to sabotage our lives, which makes it almost impossible to pursue our purpose. So, how do we develop a good attitude?
How to Adjust our Attitude
Most things in life we can’t control, but there is one thing we can control: our attitude.
You were taught, with regard to your former way of life, to put off your old self, which is being corrupted by its deceitful desires; to be made new in the attitude of your minds; and to put on the new self, created to be like God in true righteousness and holiness. Ephesians 4:22-24 NIV
These verses invite us to adjust our attitude. How? By reflecting on truth. When we choose to follow Jesus, we become new people. Instead of striving to get more, we are content with what we need. Instead of feeling consistently unworthy, we trust that God made us with a purpose. And instead of feeling like we can’t succeed, we believe that God is with us and He’s for us.
This new attitude allows us to live with trust that, even when life feels chaotic, God is in control—which opens the door to a positive attitude in every situation.
2. You don’t win without sacrifices.
Like baseball, life is a team sport—and teams win together. For a team to win, some players need to make sacrifices for the good of the team.
Sometimes it’s easy to think of someone “winning at life” as someone who doesn’t have to make sacrifices. They have the skills, talents, and resources to go through life on easy mode. But the opposite is often true.
We need to make healthy sacrifices to start winning at life. But what makes a sacrifice healthy? Well, it starts with our motivations. Check out this verse:
… don’t forget to do good and to share with those in need. These are the sacrifices that please God. Hebrews 13:16 NLT
Someone who has enough, yet chooses to consistently sacrifice close relationships so they can pursue solo success isn’t on their way to winning at life. They may live in a nicer home and drive a nicer car, but along the way they’ve given up things worth more than the material goods they’ve gained. That’s not the way to achieve a meaningful life. Instead, we win together through consistent, healthy sacrifices for the sake of others—as we do good and share.
Who are some people you can help with your time, talents, and resources? Maybe they live in your apartment building or on your street. Those sacrifices can lead to healthier relationships you be able to depend on when you’re the one in need.
3. No grass stains, no glory. No bruises, no story.
There’s a lot of risk in baseball. You need to stand really close to a hard object being thrown very fast. There’s also a lot of sliding onto the ground and diving to catch the ball. So injuries can happen—and they can be serious.
Players face risk, pain, and setbacks in games—just as we gather stains and bruises from daily life. Sometimes the pain we face leaves scars, both physical and mental. They show what we’ve had to overcome to make it to this point. Our scars don’t define us, but they are a part of us, our story, and who we’re becoming.
Everyone has scars, even whole and healthy people. We’ve tried things, failed, pursued goals we didn’t achieve, and made mistakes that hurt us and others. People who are winning at life are winning with a limp. They’ve experienced pain and have the scars to prove it.
What scars do you have? Maybe it’s a failed business or a marriage that didn’t make it. Maybe your scars stem from the hurtful words or actions of someone who was supposed to be a safe haven—or from a choice or series of choices you wish you could undo.
As you reflect on your scars, consider these words from the Bible:
And the God of all grace, who called you to his eternal glory in Christ, after you have suffered a little while, will himself restore you and make you strong, firm and steadfast. To him be the power for ever and ever. Amen. 1 Peter 5:10-11 NIV
We can’t avoid the pain of life, but we can let it shape us in positive ways. We can learn from our mistakes, gain empathy in our grief, and find confidence in Christ as we seek hope and healing.
Jesus lived a perfect life, but even He had scars. After He rose from the dead, Jesus showed His followers the nail marks on His hands. Those scars told a story—they were a physical reminder of Jesus’ sacrifice for us. Our scars can tell a story too.
So let’s seek healing for the bruises and scars we’ve gathered in life through trusted relationships. This might look like finding a LifeGroup and maybe seeking a professional counselor. Then, as we heal, let’s find ways to allow God to use our story to bring hope, encouragement, and inspiration to others.
4. It ain’t over till it’s over.
Just about every great sports movie has a come-from-behind victory. The game is almost over, and the team you’re rooting for is about to lose. Then, through determination, teamwork, and a little luck—the good guys win.
Even though we know how those movies will end, we still watch them. Why? Because at one time or another, we all feel like some key part of our life is over. Maybe you made a mistake in the past that makes you feel unworthy of happiness in the present. Perhaps you’ve tried to break a bad habit more times than you can count, so now you’ve stopped trying to quit. Or you might feel too inexperienced, too unworthy, or too old to make a difference. But these movies remind us of a powerful truth—it ain’t over till it’s over.
You’re here, reading this article. And as you read it, your lungs fill with air and your heart pumps blood through your body. At the same time, billions of synapses in your brain are doing countless calculations to keep your body running. All of this is happening while you’re not even aware of it. Why does this matter? Because it means you’re alive—so your story isn’t over.
It’s not too late to start winning at life.
In baseball, teams can have a few bad innings but still win the game. Maybe you feel like your life has had some fruitless seasons. Maybe you’ve been prioritizing the wrong things or have some unhealthy habits. Or you might have made a life-changing choice you regret.
But you’re alive, which means the game isn’t over—so it’s not too late to start winning at life.
How do you start? By pursuing your calling—to live and love like Jesus. We make big and small sacrifices for the good of others, and we seek healthy relationships.
We also might need to work toward healing our relationships with others and ourselves. That might look like picking up the phone and asking for forgiveness, or it could look like seeking professional help or a support group.
Here’s how to win at life.
If anyone is winning at life, it’s Jesus. He lived without sin and pursued God with His whole life. Jesus sacrificially cared for people and taught everyone how to live in tune with God.
Jesus’ life wasn’t comfortable. After all, He didn’t have a consistent home for three years. He faced constant threats and criticism and was eventually executed on the cross as a sacrifice for us all.
How do we start winning at life? We live like Jesus. We choose sacrifice instead of personal gain. We choose to trust God even when life is chaotic. And we allow our pain to bring healing to others. It’s a way of life that doesn’t make sense to many people—but it’s how we truly find life.
No matter what inning of life you’re in, It’s not too late for you to pursue this kind of life. You’re not too old, too far gone, or too broken to find life. So start today. Keep following Jesus and pursuing life.