On the Tee… Par 4

“Hi, I’m Marc and this is my playing partner Becky.”

“Hi I’m Larry and this is my wife Suzanne—she will not be playing but she is going to accompany us—and this is her son, Jake.”

CIMG0136                                                                              Meet “Jake”

So goes the typical “Tee Dance”  we often do when the three of us get together to enjoy a round of golf.  As a matter of efficient course management and pace of play, we are usually paired with another twosome when we play.

Jake and I play while Suzanne, who is not a golfer, accompanies us, enjoying the fresh air, the sun and the opportunity to spend 5 precious hours with her son—now grown and out of the nest.  She also spends a significant portion of that 5 hours  acting as pin holder, green reader, consultant and, at times, consoling influence.  Together we take  full advantage of the time we are privileged to spend together on the golf course.  It’s a delightful mix we have enjoyed for going on 20 years.

In our Saturday afternoon round with Marc and Becky, Jake (a 25 year old “flat belly” who crushes  many of his drives over 300 yards while still managing to find the fairway and, at the same time possessing a short game “touch” that would be the envy of most  golfers) played from the tips while  Marc and I moved two tee boxes closer to the fairway.  Or, to be more precise, we headed to the tees for the lesser skilled player—the ones Harvey Penick lovingly referred to as “the tee’s for the more seasoned golfer (a nice euphemism for “seniors”)  while Becky hit her tee shots from the Ladies tees— the forwards tees, for the more politically correct.

Now that I have positioned myself comfortably as a player of lesser golf ability and therefore one of whom less is expected than “the young turk” you might want to say “enough of the excuses, What happened?  How did you play?”

Answer:  We had a delightful time, each of us playing the best we could that day, excelling on some holes and surviving others but enjoying the process, the companionship and the company, all the same. .  But there was more to the outing that day that I didn’t recognize until we received the following notes from Becky and Marc a few days later..

Becky: “…Saturday was so much fun for us. You, Suzanne and Jake made us feel so comfortable. Thank you!!!  It was a blast!  I hope we can join you again. I know we’ll try to get that to happenI appreciated the chance to watch Jake hit that ball. I will remember his abilities always.

Marc: “…Just wanted to let you know that Becky and I had a great time with you, your wife and son Jake …. I hope you all made it back home safely with the weather that rolled in after we finished…I have never played (golf) with someone as talented as your son, it was a real treat. I have to admit I was intimidated and wanted to play as well as he did.  In any event I would love to maybe play with you again sometime in the future.”

I had to swallow hard when I read these notes.  They were very nice, thoughtful, complementary notes.  Yes, but there was also a sobering message to me buried in their words.

Their words reminded me that:  “Like it or not, good or not so good, I am always on display.  Always!” 

“Always” encompasses so much more than just the golf course and the game.  You and I are always on display  24/7 whenever and wherever we go.  That means that every word I speak, every action I take, every inflection in my tone of voice becomes a part of my “life signature” scrawled out for all to see.  The same is true for you.  It begs the question in me: “what does my signature look like to my wife, my kids and grand kids, my friends, my colleagues and most importantly, what does my signature look like to my Maker who see’s not only my behaviors but the deepest regions of my heart as well?”

Because I am a flawed individual, I have some details I need to pay attention to regarding my “signature.” 

The good news, for me, is that God knows everything about my “signature” and my life’s journey.  And because I have chosen to ask his Son to be the Leader of my life he has promised to remove the rough edges of my “signature” before I get to my eternal home with Him.

How’s your “signature” looking?


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