Life Lessons from Golf

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The key to a good golf shot is to stay nice and relaxed and calm throughout the swing. From set up, to aiming, to the grip, to the swing, and through the follow through. Everything should be nice and easy, loosie-goosie grip, trusting in the swing and the club to do what it’s designed to do.

Once in a while, I have days when I literally can’t hit the ball. It’s almost as if I’ve forgotten how to play golf. It feels like I’ve never even held a golf club before.

I will have weeks and months of decent golf…and then, BAM!!!…out of nowhere comes a day when nothing goes right. The aiming is off. The grip and stance feel awkward. And the ball…oh my goodness…the ball!!! It goes wherever it wants…except for where I want!

I had one of those days this past week. But it’s ok. I learned a huge lesson.

I played well for the first four holes.

And then it happened. One errant shot.

Then the over-thinking, the over-correcting. Then even more “corrections” and “adjustments.” It got so bad, my 13 year-old son tells me swing advice.

When I start to play poorly, I try harder. And when I try harder, I end up tensing up. I end up gripping tighter. Swinging harder. Swinging faster. And each of these things only make things worse, not better. But the thing that is tricky is that during the unravelling I actually think these things are helping.

Things got so bad that I stopped playing after 9 holes and went straight to the driving range. Once I got there, I relaxed, loosened my grip, and took a nice relaxed swing.

Guess what happened?

The ball flew a beautiful trajectory right toward the target.

The key to a good golf swing is to relax, stay loose, and trust the swing and the club to do what it was designed to do. The harder and faster I swing, and the harder I grip the club, the worse the outcome is.

Here’s why I tell you all this. Because that’s exactly what I do when it comes to life. When things are not going right, I try harder, I work harder, I hold on tighter. I really believe that each of these things are making things better. But in actuality, each of these are making things worse.

To make life work, I need to let go, relax, and trust that what God promised works. I need to let go and trust God and let God do God only what God can.

To do that, I need to chill out. Relax. Loosen my grip on things and trust God. Trust in God’s methods.

And once I do that? You should see the beautiful trajectory of a life that trusts God!

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