It was a perfect day for golf: A brilliant blue sky and gentle breeze. The lush fairway lined with majestic trees beckoned me to begin. I could clearly see the flag fluttering at the hole nearly 200 yards away. It felt great to be out in the fresh air on such an awesome day.
After a few easy practice swings, I stepped up to the ball and made an absolutely textbook swing, sending the little dimpled orb soaring up and out, straight toward the flag (a shocking and somewhat rare occurrence in my experience). It landed softly, bounced a couple of times, and then began an inexorable roll across the green. I watched with growing disbelief, as it rolled right up to the hole, paused ... and dropped in. A hole-in-one — the holy grail of golfers!
Whooping it up, my buddies pounded me on the back. Celebration time! In the midst of the high fives ... I became suddenly aware of a jangling sound. I reached for my cell phone. It wasn't the phone. Something else was ringing — my alarm clock.
It's sadly true. I've only achieved a hole-in-one in my dreams — unless you count the time I accidentally perforated our neighbor Mr. Bunker's prized Pontiac with a B-B. My track record is not admirable.
But I've gained more wisdom at aiming for worthy targets. And I keep trying. Something in my early training convinced me it is okay to try and fail. The shame comes not in missing the mark, but in failing to try. In the game of golf, I've learned 100 percent of the putts hit short, fail to go in the hole. And that principle extends beyond the games we play, into life itself.
It's part of the DNA placed in us by our Creator — a divine miracle God places within our reach. When Moses stretched out his rod; when the priests touched their feet to the river Jordan; when Daniel prayed; when Esther reached out for the scepter; when a little lad offered a few loaves and fish — water parted, a dream was solved, a nation saved, thousands were fed. All because people were willing to stretch beyond status quo to believe in a power beyond themselves.
When life squeezes the life out of you; when a difficult relationship convinces you you're not worth it; when financial difficulty leaves you no apparent way out; remember — the end of our power is the beginning of His. We can with freedom tap into the apostle's challenge to "come boldly before the throne of grace, for there we find help in time of need."
I resonate with the words of William Wordsworth: "How does the meadow flower its bloom unfold? Because the lovely little flower is free down to its root, and in that freedom bold."
It comes to you free of shipping and handling fees. It's a gift, from your Creator. So bloom ... bloom boldly.
When life squeezes the life out of you; when a difficult relationship convinces you you're not worth it; when financial difficulty leaves you no apparent way out; remember the end of our power is the beginning of His.