Moneyball, Mathematics and Faith

I know I am late coming to this movie, but Moneyball starring (swoon) Brad Pitt really got to me. The best scene for me was when Billy Beane’s nerdy friend, Peter Brand, the mind behind the strategy to make the Oakland A’s a winning ball team, says, “Some of baseball’s most talented players are being overlooked because they are a bit odd or they don’t have charisma, because they don’t look like models or act like stars. They are the best in the game in many respects, but they don’t get noticed because they do not draw attention to themselves.” This really spoke to me because I think about how many times I have prejudged people and written them off and really missed being a part of a quality relationship.

Samuel addressed this very issue in the Bible when he chose David to be the king of Israel. David was the youngest of Jesse’s sons and was still a child, but Samuel could see his potential. He looked at David with God’s eyes. God’s eyes?

Right now I am reading Mark Batterson’s book In a Pit with a Lion on a Snowy Day. Batterson explains that God is dimension-less. That is, He exists outside our human limitations in space and time.

[He’s looking at us from outside our world not looking outward from within like we are. God does not share our perspective.] The bracketed sentence is my own.

The shortest possible time is 10 t0 the minus 43rd seconds. It is called Planck time. Any shorter and quantum mechanics can’t tell whether events are simultaneous. The shortest possible distance is 1.6 x 10 to the minus 35th meters. It’s called Planck length. Any shorter and quantum mechanics cant distinguish between here and there.

And that’s where God comes in. He’s in the space and the time that, according to quantum mechanics, doesn’t exist…. God is all around us all the time. He is right before, right after, right ahead, and right behind. God has no dimensional limitations, and if we could wrap our minds around that truth, it would transform our outlook on life.  (p. 26)

Faith gives us the dimensional freedom to overcome our human limitations by exiting space-time via prayer.

I had to stop to think really hard about the man in Moneyball who could see beyond what could be seen. Space-time is mathematical. Mathematicians are the quantum physicists that explain such phenomena. Peter Brand uncovered the valuable players in baseball mathematically. He came up with a formula that calculated each player’s ability down to a single number. That single number erased the negative influences that would cause a player to be overlooked if judged subjectively. Peter had faith in his system and when put to the test, it worked.

I ask myself.”Do I have faith in God the way Peter Brand had faith in his baseball system?” A. W. Tozer (1978) said that we might predict with certainty the spiritual future of a man if we but knew what he thought about God.* Batterson says, “[A person’s] internal picture of God determines how you see everything else.” (p. 28) I am asking myself today and so I also ask you, “What comes to mind when you think about God?”

Walking with Him with Ann and community this Wednesday,


* Tozer, A. W. (1978) The Knowledge of the Holy San Francisco: Harper


7 comments on “Moneyball, Mathematics and Faith

  1. Dear Dawn,
    Only you, can take me from my outrage at “Hold the Fort” to a mouth dropping line of pondering material on the dimension of God! Your thinking cap delights the recesses of my soul.

    Off to work… Pondering my faith in God’s unlimited dimension………

  2. Our only hope is that God is all and in all. He is even where we do not know and so our mountains are but ant hills to Him. I must always readjust in light of the Lord God Almighty. That is why it is so very important to always keep Him in my sight (and I use that word very specifically so that I focus on Him…before I shoot my mouth off, lol!)

    I’m off to work, too, and I really need a big God at work: behind me, before me, above me, below me. I get where He is in prayer. I best do that.

    Thanks for starting your day with me, Carrie, and thanks for the e-mail on Willard. Who knew?

    Mucho hugs,

    • Ha! Who knew indeed!

      “So very important to always keep Him in my sight, so that I focus on Him BEFORE I shoot my mouth off.” My big challenge! Luckily God knows all about it and designed me with that impulse so that he could teach me important things, like focusing on Him. Thank you Lord, for helping me. And thank you Dawn, for sharing your mind.

  3. All I could think was a big “WOW!” as I read this! I was especially struck by your statement about – what we are as a person is determined by what we think of God or how we see Him. My mind took a lightening fast trip through my life, from early childhood on through late adulthood. As a child, I was afraid of Him as He was judge, ruler, taskmaster, and a demander of perfection. As a hurt and broken teenager, I saw Him as one who was distant, didn’t care, had favorites, was aloof, etc. Early adulthood — I avoided Him and said I didn’t care. It all ended in a desparate pursuit of Him and a finding out of who He really was. Your statement is so true that we are what we think of Him, because in each of those segments of my life, I was a different person. Amazing!

    Lately, I have been pondering and chewing over the question, Is there any difference between “faith” and “trust”. It seems that many translations use the word interchangeably. As I read your post, I thought of Heb. 11 and those two words once again. It does seem to me that faith is inward, the foundation, what we believe. Trust is what we do with it, the outworking of our faith, the proof of our faith. Faith believes the chair will hold me. Trust is sitting in the chair. And that’s where things change with how we perceive God. I can believe He is there. But do I live my life out trusting that fact????

    I don’t know where I’m going with this, but all of what you said today will be thrown into my mix of thoughts as I go through the day. Thank you, Dawn!

  4. Finally have a few seconds to stop by for a little read and then off to bed. Love this post Dawn and the comments too. Thanks for sharing Tozer’s wisdom re what we think about God.

    Still adjusting to my new life,
    Andrea Dawn

  5. Dear Andrea Dawn and Cora,

    Thanks for being here and reading my dribbling. I am still adjusting to my new life, as well, Andrea Dawn. I must hang onto my big God for each small thing. I believe He can get me through the learning process. Now, Cora, I must sit in the chair. Good point!

    ‘night, All!

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