Hole in one

Hole in one

Cyndi and I recently returned from some vacation in the desert. We rested, ate great food, sat in a hot tub, hiked, visited Joshua Tree National Park and, of course, we golfed. Cyndi enjoys the game as much as I do and, by the way, was POUNDING her drives!

My high point was a hole-in-one.

It wasn’t a very impressive hole. Only 110 yards long. But the two guys on a condo balcony joined us in cheering the moment (unlike the last one when I was all by myself!)

The funny thing about this was, it came in the midst of a pretty horrible round of golf. I described it as (cover your children’s eyes) a diamond on a turd tiara. The previous hole was a triple bogey (for you non-golfers, that’s really bad) and the rest of the nine was almost as unimpressive.

Still… right there in the middle of the golfing yuck… is a “1” with a big circle around it. I kept the scorecard, tucking it away in my memento drawer, available to take an encouraging peek at the NEXT time I’m ready to give up the game. I COULD look at the scores on the other 18 holes. OR… I could look at that beautiful “1,” a reminder of why I still love… and will keep playing… golf.

That’s kind of life, isn’t it?  Plenty of days that are kind of ho-hum. A few that are pretty darned awful. But then… then there are those moments when you ace it!  Wonderful, life-giving, joy-giving, encouraging moments that remind us that life is really good and really worthy living. The more we can focus on the aces… and ignore the triple-bogeys… the better life will be.

Apostle Paul knew this. In Philippians 4:8, he urged his readers to think about the good things; to look for and focus on things that are life-giving and encouraging. Of course, I’m getting ahead of myself. Our sermon series in Philippians doesn’t start until after Easter… but my “turd in the tiara” reminded me of what good advice that is.

So… pull out that life scorecard, look for your “1”— whatever that might be—and be encouraged!

Meantime, I’ll see you in church tomorrow as we continue our journey through Daniel! King Nebuchadnezzar is about to make an idiot of himself. I think you’ll enjoy it!

Pastor Mark