When I was a boy, I played baseball in the local YMCA league. The coach tried playing me in several positions, but settled on first base. Our second game was under the lights. Two things I remember well. First, a batter hit a high pop up and I decided that I was the guy to catch it. Second, when I finally lunged and missed it, I was lying on third base. I have no idea what happened in between.
At our next practice, the coach had a team meeting to go over various game “basics.” He kindly pointed out that the first baseman never catches a ball on third base. I was glad to hear that because it’s a long way to run.
The other major “basic” in baseball is called the follow-through. If you are the batter, and you ground out to first base, run all the way to first base anyway. Also, when you swing the bat, go all the way around whether you hit the ball or not. It’s called follow-through.
To follow-through is to complete the motion you have started. It does not matter if it is golf, tennis, baseball, or soccer, what you do after hitting the ball impacts the success of play. If you suddenly stop, you could affect the speed or direction of the ball. The lack of a follow-through implies that you're not putting as much power on the ball as you could be.
Follow-through is an essential part of tennis. In any shot, the follow-through refers to the swing and motion of the racket after initial contact has been made with the ball. The follow-through affects the track and power of the shot.
In soccer, a coach will tell the player to not slow down at the end of their kick. A player should continue to push their leg forward and rotate their hips so the foot maintains contact with the ball and produces a more powerful shot.
Follow-through in needed in basketball, too. When you shoot toward the basket, your arm should come up and straighten as you flick your wrist to release the ball. To follow through means to hold that position until the ball reaches the hoop.
But there is a bigger question: Do you “follow-through” in life? Sales people are taught to follow up on clients and ask, “Did you get your order? Was everything satisfactory?” But to follow-through is different than to follow up. To follow-through means to make the critical decision to change for the better, and then to actually adjust your lifestyle and habits to complete that decision.
Zig Ziglar said, “It was character that got us out of bed, commitment that moved us into action, and discipline that enabled us to follow-through.” And then there was this quote from Sir Walter Scott, “I can give you a six-word formula for success: "Think things through - then follow-through.”
In our spiritual life, God looks for people that will follow-through on their commitments to Him. It is one thing to say I will pray, and quite another to actually pray. It is the same with Bible study, giving, and acts of service. Follow-through gets it done. Ecclesiastes 7:8 ESV, “Better is the end of a thing than its beginning.”
I can assure you that God will be faithful to all of His commitments to you. “And I am sure of this, that He who began a good work in you will bring it to completion at the day of Jesus Christ.” (Philippians 1:6)
Will you be faithful to God and follow-through on your commitments to Him? If no, why not?