This inspiring picture book biography plants the seed - dreams can be achieved. Marcenia Lyle's dream changed the way people saw women and how they saw the color of her skin.
She didn't let the opinions of others hold her back from the game she loved - the game of baseball.
Marcenia Lyle loved baseball.
She loved the powdery taste of dust clouds as she slid through them. She loved the way the sun heated her hair as she crouched in the outfield waiting for fly balls. And she loved the sting in her palm as a baseball slammed into it, right before tagging a runner out.
If there was anything in the world better than baseball, Marcenia didn't know what it was. She dreamed of growing up to be a professional ballplayer, so she could play all the time.
And she did! Marcenia Lyle will continue to inspire children as well as adults to strive for their dreams. It may not be easy and take a lot of hard work, but dreams are worth it.
Marcenia grew up playing baseball with the boys in her neighborhood. One day Gabby Street, the manager for the St. Louis Cardinals, showed up looking for kids to attend a free baseball camp.
At first Gabby told Marcenia she couldn't attend the camp because she was a girl. Marcenia didn't let that stop her, but allowed it to motivate her to prove her worth and prove him wrong. And she did!
When Marcenia's family didn't have enough money to buy her cleats, Gabby made them a gift to her. Her father agreed to let her play; Marcenia was on her way to making her dream to play professional baseball come true! And she did!
"Marcenia Lyle never lost her passion for baseball or her dream of playing professionally. In 1937, at the age of sixteen, she began her career as a pitcher with the Twin Cities Colored Giants." - Afterward
Marcenia was known as "Toni Stone" in the baseball world and lived from 1921-1996.
How often do our youth hear the words "You can't" or feel limitations put on their dreams? This picture book biography shouts "Don't give up! Go for your dreams!"
One of my favorite Bible verses that goes well with this book is found in Philippians 4:13 - "I can do all things through Christ Who strengthens me."
Marcenia was a little girl with a big dream. Along the way, others came along side her and helped her move toward her dream through encouragement and making a way where there didn't seem to be a way. She learned it's okay to be different and unique and not just like the crowd.
This picture book biography encourages us to believe - believe in ourselves, believe in others, believe in a dream.
Another way this book spoke to me personally was how we as adults have the power to impact a child's life. What we do may seem small to us, but you never know when God may use what we do to make the way for a child to become all he or she was meant to be.
Gabby Street said yes to a little girl and bought her a pair of cleats. Small in the hands of our big God can change a life or maybe even the world!
Marcenia's may have included:
Dream: Play professional baseball