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How a Man on a Ball Motivated Me To Get on the Ball


I’ve been trying to pick up a few new magic skills lately. Over the years, I have fallen into a tried-and-true routine with tricks that are mostly self-working. It’s not a bad show, but it hasn’t taken me anywhere fresh or exciting. Not too long ago, I caught the act of a very talented guy. He didn’t open with a flash and a bang–but with a kazoo and a few jokes. Doesn’t cartoon-clown-balancing-on-ballssound too exciting, but his timing and gestures were so perfect that he drew in kids and adults alike. After warming up the crowd, he transitioned into some tricks, audience participation and juggling. He ended up by running in place on a giant ball!

I will confess that I was a little jealous at first. Later, as I processed everything, the envy melted away. The entertainer was so good, so alluring, that I couldn’t help but like him. He ended his show with a Gospel message, prayed for the people and humbly asked the crowd to pray for him as he went about doing his ministry.

This man doesn’t know it, but he has lit a fire under me. The memory of his act keeps motivating me to think outside the box. After seeing his act, I want to be a better entertainer, but even more–an entertainer with purpose.

This whole incident reminds me of some excellent advice: “And let us consider how we may spur one another on toward love and good deeds” (Hebrews 10:24). The word for “consider” means to perceive, understand or attentively fix one’s eyes or mind upon. As believers, we have been created to do good, but more: we are actually admonished to contemplate ways to encourage other people to do good, to focus on how we can incite them to do better. To be better. In so doing, we become better, too. We take another step in morphing into the image of Christ, who did not come to earth to please Himself, but to do the will of God by serving and exhorting others.

At my age, you aren’t going to see me trying to jog on a ball. The next time you see me in action, though, I might have a trick or two up my sleeve you haven’t seen before. But I sincerely hope I don’t just amuse you. All good entertainers do that. I hope you are motivated to draw closer to God, move nearer to people who need to be blessed by your gifts and talents.  

Doing good isn’t magic. But something magical happens when we do good.

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