Finding God's Winning Spirit

Arrival vs Departure

January 23, 2015 | Greg Smith | Devotional


After spending about 15 minutes looking for my ball I found it in 4 inches of rough, nestled between a root and an ant bed. Due to the close proximity of the tree my back-swing was hindered by a low hanging tree limb.  All of this with no mention of the  clump of mud on my ball. As they say in golf I was “in trouble”.

I had about 165 yards to the green, over water, with out- of- bounds to the left. There was a lay-up spot short of the green but I would have to hit a cut-shot to get there, which appeared to be unwise considering the position of the ball in relationship to the root. I of course had the option to deem it unplayable with penalty. In the midst of all this something came to mind. If I had put this much thought and preparation into the tee shot I probably wouldn’t be here. Perhaps more planning before the “arrival” would have simplified the upcoming “departure”.

We kid ourselves if we think we can find peace and happiness in life by escaping trouble time and time again. Crisis usually comes from bad planning or lack of insight. If we do not fix those things that cause us to get off track in life we will continually find ourselves pinning our hopes on some miraculous/ low-percentage “bail out shot” destined for disaster.  Wisdom clearly comes from analyzing how we got where was are vs. how to get out, from what went wrong vs. how to fix it.

Unfortunately this is human nature and I see it all the time in my practice. Clients generally come to therapy because they have found themselves “in trouble” and want to know how to get out. They invariably want to talk about “departure strategy” instead of the issues and behavior that got them there. They, like me, want to pull off some great shot, a miracle if you will, hoping to avaid the real problem – the “preceding swing”.

As a player, and follower of Christ, I can tell you from experience that you can learn a lot more in life studying “arrival times” than “departure strategies. After all, you can’t make a living on Tour hitting a lot of cut-shots out of root-bound, four- inch rough.  

Play- on and agape.

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