The Oddest Thing

mariano-riveraYesterday I happened to catch the exceptional documentary on Mariano Rivera called “Being: Mariano.” If you missed it, it will be on again October 22nd at 8:30pm on FOXsports. I highly recommend it. At some point during the show, he said the oddest thing. I hit rewind on the DVR, listened to it again and again and again. Then I tweeted it and 6 people retweeted it and 2 favorited it. Apparently I wasn’t the only one that found this statement so interesting.

This little quote has done a number to me the past 24 hours. So you’re telling me that the greatest closer in the history of Major League Baseball is doing something that he “likes” but doesn’t love? Then you’re telling me that he believes that God chose him to play baseball and not the sport he really loves? Then you are also saying that he doesn’t just play this sport, he’s the greatest to ever play that sport at the position he played. He just likes it, but loves something else. But he’s the best and God chose him to do that.


I had to hit pause on all I have ever assumed or thought I knew about God and me and doing what I love for a minute. Could Mariano Rivera (who I have massive amounts of respect for) be right? Could he have just closed out a Hall of Fame career doing something that God chose him to do, even though it’s not what he loved but just liked? Could it be that God may chose us to do something we only “like” but don’t love and it turns out to be the thing that we are possibly better at than anyone else….ever?


This is the oddest thing I have ever heard and yet there is something so rich and true and real about it that I can’t stop pondering it. I think I’ve spent a majority of my life chasing opportunities that I love because I thought that is how God wired me so it must be where I’m supposed to be. I’ve lost/left positions where I was doing something I absolutely loved and figured that is where I was supposed to be. It fit like a “hand in a glove.” Now this comes along and changes things. What if the thing we’re supposed to be doing and the thing that God chose us to do, we just “like?” What if that is where He is going to do His greatest work in us? What if that is where we will leave our greatest impact and legacy?

I’ve always thought that we leave our impact and legacy doing what we love to do. The oddest thing is that it might actually be doing what God chose us to do and we just like. Even if we love to do something else.

Thank you Mariano. Thank you for playing the game the right way. Thank you for leaving a legacy far beyond cutters and fastballs. Thank you for being the greatest at something you just “liked.” This game and this world is a better place because 42 played the game that God chose you to play and you just “liked.”

2 thoughts on “The Oddest Thing

  1. Not sure I completely agree or embrace the Idea Aaron. I am still processing it. Did Billy Graham just like to preach? Do any of the Christian or secular musicians just like to play or sing or write music? I really believe that God puts in each of us a desire, a passion, a purpose. And it is only when we are doing whatever that is that we truly love God and those around us….. It becomes evident to us and to those around us. Theologian Frederick Buechner wrote that “vocation is where our greatest joy meets the world’s greatest need.” I find it difficult to believe we could have Joy and meet the needs of the world in the way God meant us to do by just liking whatever that is.

    Blessings my friend,

    1. Agreed. Something tells me Mariano Rivera liked baseball more than he made it sound like. I think of the times that people say “You are really good at (insert whatever that is)” all the time and we don’t really think about it because it comes easy, or it’s natural. I’ve always believed that is the place to start the search for what God placed in us. I love music, playing the guitar and singing, but I am awful at both. Horrible. No way I could make a career out of it let alone a hall of fame career. If nothing else, it’s another chance to think about what Gods intent and purpose is. Great stuff John.

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