“…if you’re honest…” Par 5

One of my all time favorite movies with golf as the carrier of its story line is The Legend of Bagger Vance.   It was directed by Robert Redford and its marquee stars are Matt Damon, Will Smith and Charlize Theron.  Golf is the vehicle, life is the real subject of the movie.

Bagger Vance - Hardy_RedfordMV5BMjA0MTQyMzEyM15BMl5BanBnXkFtZTYwMTc4NDY3._V1__SX1234_SY535_                                                                                  Photo by David James – © 2000 –

                                                DreamWorks LLC. and Twentieth Century Fox Film Corporation

I can resurrect many thoughts generated by the movie but one scene stands out vividly in my mind.  In this scene 12 year old Hardy Greaves (J. Micheal Moncrief ) is having a heartfelt conversation with his idol, golfer Rannulph Junah (Matt Damon):

Rannulph – “You really love this game, don’t you?

Hardy – “The greatest game there is.”

Junah – ” You really think so?”

Hardy – Just ask anybody.  It’s fun, it’s hard and you stand out there on that green green grass and it’s just you and the ball and there ain’t nobody to beat up on but yourself…It’s the only game I know where you can call a penalty on yourself, If you’re honest”


I love it!  In one brief moment this boy encapsulates why i love this game so much.  It shines a light on my honesty character and integrity…or…something less.

I try to be very careful to play within the confines of the rules of golf when I play.  But there are times when, for whatever reason, I run into difficulties that call for a penalty.  It is then that my level of honesty, character and integrity display themselves. Will I be honest, call the penalty on myself or will I ignor the rules or refuse to take responsibility for the infraction. I Don’t want to take those penalty strokes and I can choose not to and begin to make excuses. Hey, it’s just a game, Right?


My experience indicates that what one chooses to do regarding the rules on the golf course is likely to be a direct reflection of how one approaches life off the course as well—cheat here/cheat there, honest here/honest there.  It’s a very telling mirror.

So with that in mind, go ahead.  You can be honest here.  No one will know but you…and God

What are you seeing in your mirror these days?



2 responses to this post.

  1. Posted by John Smith on June 6, 2014 at 1:34 pm

    It’s amazing “how” honest we can be in from of others, but getting alone can be an entirely story . . . so I’ve been told! 😉


    • John – Couldn’t agree more. I have to constantly remind myself I can’t hide from God and I can’t hide from me. I’ve tried both—unsuccessfully.


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