Mary Dobkin was an unlikely baseball hero. Born in the early 1900s, she suffered severe frostbite as a child which resulted in long term complications. She endured multiple hospital stays and surgeries and spent her adult life in poverty, living on disability benefits.
While hospitalized, Mary came to love the sport of baseball. As an adult, she realized that baseball could be an encouragement to the poor children of her neighbourhood. Mary raised funds for equipment and uniforms and started a team. Even though having to use a wheelchair or crutches, she was able to coach thousands of children over the years.
Volunteering her time, Mary was instrumental in providing quality athletic programs to impoverished children. She not only taught these children how to play the sport, she taught them to be responsible, upright citizens.
Why discuss Mary today? She is a shining example that one person can make a huge impact. Mary looked around her world and saw an opportunity for service and embraced it. All she did was not for her own personal gain, but for the betterment of her community.
Rather than grumbling about her own poor living conditions, Mary Dobkin sought to reach outside herself to make not only her own life meaningful, but also to improve her community. This kind of spirit is instrumental in helping others.
Think about where God has placed you, right here and right now. Maybe it’s not an ideal situation for a variety of reasons. Perhaps you frequently wish your circumstances could be different.
Yet, God has put you where you are for a reason.
You might be the only one who can be instrumental in impacting certain people. God puts people in your life that need His love and care and He works through you!
These pandemic times breed isolation and hopelessness. We can work to change that by our attitudes and actions. You might think that you have no abilities to improve the lives of others but there is always a way where we can make a positive difference.
Mary Dobkin never married or had children of her own, but she mothered countless young lives in the Baltimore area over many years. Her influence is still felt today in the athletic clubs that continue to exist in that city to help the underprivileged.
Who has God put in your sphere of influence? Open your heart and mind to all that God has in store for you. Ask Him to guide you to the needs that are out there and to show you how to make a difference. You will be amazed about all the opportunities that present themselves when we are looking for ways to shine God’s love to the world.