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Pete O’Brien played first base for the Texas Rangers for several years & did so well that he was given a contract with the Seattle Mariners for multi-million dollars. He now plays first base in Seattle, but still lives in the Arlington area.

Dennis Slaughter, minister of the Valley View Christian Church in Dallas, preached for a special service at the Arlington Christian Church last year, telling them how Valley View was starting new churches in Russia & the Ukraine. Pete O’Brien listened & got so excited about what they were doing that he decided he wanted to go with them when they went back over to work with the church Valley View is partnering.

So Dennis & Pete got together at lunch one day to talk about it. Listen as Dennis tells about that lunch: "Well, as we sat there in TGIF eating our meal, people kept coming up & asking Pete for his autograph. But no one asked me for my autograph. No one even asked what team I played for or anything like that, but they all asked him for his autograph.

"As we were talking he asked me, ‘What do you think I ought to take to Russia? Do you think I ought to take some baseball mitts & bats? Do you think I ought to take some autographed balls or pictures or something?’

"I said, ‘Pete, I don’t know how to tell you this, & I really hate to put a pin in your balloon, but they’ve never heard of the Seattle Mariners in the Ukraine. They’ve never heard of you, & I’ll be a bigger celebrity over there than you, because preachers are really celebrities in the Ukraine. That’s why I like to go back again & again.’

"Then we got to talking about professional baseball & what it was like to be a player on a professional team. Pete said, ‘You know, it is really boring when we’re on the road & our families aren’t there. We spend all day in the motel before going out to the ballpark. Some of the guys play cards. We really don’t have much to do between games. It gets pretty lonely.’

"Then he said, ‘You know, I love playing baseball, but I’ve never felt like I deserve all the money I get. I’ve never felt like I deserved it."

Dennis thought, "What a contrast. I’ve listened to braggadocio athletes stand up before the media again & again & say, ‘I’m only making ten million dollars. I deserve more than that. I’m so good at what I do. There is no one who can even come close to me.’

"And then to hear someone say, ‘I don’t think I deserve it’ is like a breath of fresh air.’ Then Dennis adds, "I think the difference is that Jesus Christ reigns in the heart of Pete O’Brien, & that always make a difference."

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