The game of golf and life in many aspects are similar. In golf, you can be moving around the course and playing well until you find a hazard or two – sand trap, water, or woods. What was once the possibility for a relatively good score quickly has changed to a score that is pretty disappointing or even mediocre at best!
This is similar in life as well. Days can seem quite ordinary or extraordinary until we get some “not so good news” or an incident actually occurs – illness of oneself, spouse or close friend, loss of employment, or even loss of a loved one through death.
Just as in golf and life, something happens to humble us; we rethink our purpose for the round – our purpose and direction for the days or weeks ahead. Both golf and life can bring frustration, distractions, and enjoyment too. How one handles the next shot after straying the first can often be the difference between having a lower score verses a higher score on one’s golf card – some satisfaction and hope rather than a bleak outcome. And, who one turns toward in humble awe to handle the setbacks in life is the difference between having much hope or much despair.
In 1 Peter 5:6, Peter reminds us to humble ourselves. Humbling ourselves because of our sinful, hazardous state brought about by the devil’s deceit and trickery. So, I ask, “Who do you turn to when the hazards of life popup?” For Christians, the answer is quite obvious. We turn toward the Cross of Jesus for comfort and assurance of His mercy, grace, and love. Not allowing us to be lost in sin and headed for eternal death, God, our heavenly Father, shed His gracious love upon us by sending us Jesus, His One and Only Son, our Lord and Savior! Now, this same, Jesus, who humbled Himself and became obedient to death, is that same Jesus who intercedes for us daily and forgives us our sins. We readily go to our heavenly Father without fear and hesitation to cast all our troubles on Him because Jesus has restored you and me (1 Peter 5:7). Such love brings great peace, joy, and hope because believers in Jesus know that they have eternal life.
In golf, we are told to keep our eyes on the ball and swing easy to score better. In life, we are encouraged to set goals and strive to achieve those goals in hopes of achieving a successful venture. Words of instruction like these are good and can bring about positive results. But these words of guidance and encouragement will not bring lasting joy and satisfaction.
It is my prayer for you and your students that you readily go to Scripture and “set your eyes on Jesus” for unending joy. That is what sets our instruction apart from other private and public entities. By doing so, you are building the foundation that will sustain you and your students when those setbacks in life popup. Humbly approach your (our) heavenly Father in daily instruction and prayer thanking Him for Jesus who has defeated sin, death and the devil, praising Him for His everlasting grace, mercy, and love, and honoring Him for the blessing of faith and God’s Spirit bestowed upon us at our baptisms.
By God’s grace, you and your students can now humbly rest in Him, having much hope and joy now and in days to come!