A Lousy Day on the Golf Course is Better...

It was 82 and sunny today here in Dallas, with a slight breeze that kept the flies away - a perfect day on the golf course. Now if I could only hone in on my golf swing...

I had a boss one time that hated the fact that I love to play golf. He saw it as a waste of 4 hours that could have been spent in the office instead. Though I was sensitive to his position on the matter, my comment to him was, "I've shared the gospel more times on the golf course than in my office at the church."

It's true. Although I love to play with friends - especially with friends from the church, I try to never show up to the golf course with a full foursome, instead opting to pick up a random extra guy at the course. Other times like today, I enjoy being the random extra guy who joins another group because I know for four hours I have a captive audience.

I used to hate the first hole with an unfamiliar golf group because the polite thing to do is to introduce yourself. Then, someone asks the question, "what do you do for a living." I used to hate that question because I was afraid it would put a damper on my cigar smoking, f-bomb dropping stranger friends. Now I love the question. Usually, when the strangers find out, they'll apologize for their friends' language, and begin to ask more questions when I don't immediately condemn their friend to hell for the word he said after his sliced tee shot.

I've found I'm usually invited to share the gospel by the third hole. No, usually not in such obvious words, but I've found by the third hole someone nearly always asks me what made me want to go into ministry. So I get to explain the gospel by hole three, and spend the next fifteen holes talking them through it. And since you have to stop every four or five minutes to hit, the conversation never gets heated.

Today was a good day. I showed up by myself, picked up another guy at the clubhouse, and set out on our way. We were to the gospel by the second green. Then we spent the next sixteen holes talking through everything from grace and inerrancy to his questions about the Council of Nicea and his eastern mysticism view of Psalm 23. By the end of the day, he might have moved from an 8 on the "away-from-Christ" meter to a 6. He's not there yet, but maybe one of you will play golf with him one day and get to help move him closer. Meanwhile, pray for him if you think about it - his name is Forest.


lisa said...

I LOVE how intentional that all is. How incredible! And yes, praying for Forest!