Friday, April 15, 2016


Tell me, just how many short straws are there to be had?  They drive me nuts.  Always drawing that villainous thief bugs me.  Why am I never enough?

I've been thinking about the time that I was in a golf tournament back home in Memphis, Missouri.  That quaint little nine-hole course is still one of my favorites. When in High School, I entered a tournament and worked my way up the charts to play for the Consolation Prize.  My opponent was our family doctor; Earl Gilfillan.  He was an elderly man in his 50s and me a very eager teen.

I was pretty certain that I could take this man nearly three and half times my age. After all, he was old and brittle and I was young...and young.  He reinforced my confidence in my ability to take him on by bragging to me about how hard I swung the club.  I sure wish I could swing that hard, he repeated...and then repeated some more.

I wasn't exactly hitting the ball very well; but he continually pointed out how he wished he could swing with such might (him being old and me being much stronger, I guess). It became my wish, then, to be even more impressive with the speed of my swing.

Well, the round didn't unfold as I had planned.  I would actually make occasional long drives; but then there were those many errant shots.  The entire round I knew one thing; I surely could swing hard because doc just kept pointing to my strength (me being young and him being old and envious).

Doc beat me.  Yeah, he won.  I should have claimed the victory because I ordinarily shot better golf than he did.  But for some reason, I just wasn't on my game that day.  It occurred to me later that doc beat me in my mind.  Swinging hard does not make for good golf.  It does make for beating a young kid.

I didn't get a trophy.  I lost.  Bummer.  But in the long-run I gained for I learned a tough lesson that warm Sunday afternoon.  Trying to impress others will eventually backfire.

Be who you are because of who God makes you.  Everyone matters...everyone.  At times we lose during the day because we are trying our best to be who others say we are.  It might be more efficient to proceed with confidence as the one person God would form.  Pleasing Him would be enough, don't you think?  The more we can be confident in His call the more we will experience ultimate victory.

May we make great strides in being who we are and not what others press us to be.

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