Saturday, June 21, 2008

The Reverse Hypocrite Golfer

I was fortunate to get to go on a golf outing yesterday with my family and two great friends and their family. We were set to tee off at 5:00 and Joy dropped me off at the golf course about 3:30 then she and the boys went shopping with plans to return later and then we would all go out to eat. I hit range balls for half an hour and teed off by myself at 4:00 just to play a few and get warmed up. When I met up with our friends Jason, Amber, and Maddy at 5:00 I told Amber that she was in trouble (she is the only one of my friends I can really compete with, make fun if you want) today. I believed it too. I got in six holes between 4:00 and 5:00 and shot 2 over par. That is remarkable for me these days.

So, to cut a long story short, I ended up shooting a 53 on the front nine (I still beat Amber though, YES). I couldn't hit my driver and I left every putt I hit way short of the hole. I walked off the course wondering WHAT HAPPENED? How did I go from playing so good by myself to playing like trash when my friends and family were around?
This really bothered me to the point that I found myself thinking about it today while I cut the grass. As I thought though, I realized that this is exactly how I need to be leading my life and how opposite to how I used to live. Growing up as the child of a preacher I lived a life of being on my best behavior and acting like a Christian when everyone was looking, but allowing myself to give into sin and live life in a horrible fashion when no one else (so I thought) was around. I fear that there are many people who live this lifestyle. People who proclaim to be one thing but in secret they are totally different. I can remember vividly the day that I decided to stop living this way and looking back I can't believe I ever fooled myself into thinking I was happy. There is a name for people like that, it's called a hypocrite.
My golf game is the exact opposite. As a matter of fact, my golf game is a mirror of how I think Christ wants us to be. Be good by yourself; play well, live well, serve well. This is no fun though because no one can see us doing these great things and who is there to brag about us or to brag to. If you his a hole-in-one while golfing and no one sees it, did you really hit a hole-in-one? If you make someone happy by simply being nice to them and no one sees it did you really make someone happy? If you help an elderly widow keep her grass cut and no one sees it did you really help her? The answer to all those questions is of course YES!!! How many of us know people who do Christian deeds and then say, "look at me, I'm so great?" I'm pretty sure Christ talked quite a bit against this kind of attitude. We must try to live our lives when no one is looking in a clean and Christian fashion to avoid being a hypocrite.
Further, Christ set up a plan so that when we are with other Christians we have the right to show our flaws and ask for their help. Jason told me yesterday he was going to help me in my chipping and I responded "PLEASE do." I haven't ever asked him for help because of pride (that's another story) but I know he will help me if I ask. If you are struggling with secret sin, it is your responsibility to ask for help and not be afraid to admit that you are a human and that you make mistakes. Besides, on the day of judgment, all of your secrets will come to light. There are no secrets on a golf course when others are watching. You either do it good or not and for most of us, it's a matter of not always. It is impossible to be a hypocrite on the golf course when others are watching.
So, I challenge all of you to begin living your lives like I golf. I can't believe I just wrote that but I mean it. When no one is looking, be your best and try your hardest. Focus on what is important to you and give glory to God alone when you do well. Focus on what you are trying to accomplish don't be afraid to take a mulligan and try again. Don't brag when you do good and don't expect others to notice. Always be yourself when you are around others and don't be afraid to let others see your flaws. Be transparent (thanks Jason). There are very few who do great alone and with others so understand that and be happy that you can look up to those people. This is the very opposite of being a hypocrite so live your Christian lives as a reverse hypocrite golfer. FORE!!!!


preacherman said...

Wonderful post.
It is great!
I enjoy your blog and have added you to my favs.
Keep up the great work!

Dave Brumley said...

Thanks for the kind words and for the add. I have subscribed to your blog for some time and I really enjoy it.


Anonymous said...

Who won that day? I suppose the other guy is a good golfer?