Will Rogers humorously noted, “Long ago when men cursed and beat the ground with sticks, it was called witchcraft. Today it’s called golf.”
Have you ever gone golfing with someone and watched them completely lose their composure when their swing was errant? I’ve seen players wrap a club around a tree in anger, hurl clubs in frustration, beat the ground with putters, irons or drivers, and, turn completely red in the face—totally frustrated by the uncooperative antics of a small white ball.
James 1:2-4—Consider it a great joy, my brothers, whenever you experience various trials, knowing that the testing of your faith produces endurance. But endurance must do its complete work, so that you may be mature and complete, lacking nothing.
Golf did not exist when James rendered his advice to his readers. And golf comes nowhere close to the level of trials and faith-testing experiences the brother of Jesus mentions. But the game can actually be a determinate for how people react to adversity, mistakes, and frustration.
How do you respond when you are tested by the driver who dents your car because he was busy texting and not paying attention? Do you stay calm when your child disobeys for the umpteenth time by teasing her siblings? What do you do when the doctor comes back with the dreaded word that your cancer has returned?
If your response to adversity is joy that is a great indicator that you are walking with the Lord. It takes faith to see past pain. Perseverance is not established by surviving one storm, it is defined by weathering hard seasons. To carry on each day with joy despite unfavorable circumstances is the mark of maturity—Son-trusting, Father-believing, Spirit-leaning living. Just today a man diagnosed with prostate cancer told me he was not concerned. He knows his future and he trusts his Savior. He exuded confident joy.
Don’t beat the ground with sticks. Look up and breathe in hope—God is bigger than your worst mistake, your biggest challenge, your hardest test. Consider it a great joy . . . something difficult, but worthy of considering . . . in reveration!
The bubbling brook would lose its song if you removed the rocks.—Unknown
©2016 Daniel York ARR. Reveration is the weekly devotional ministry of First Cause. If you would like to receive these devotionals go to www.firstcause.org and click on the “Click here to receive weekly devotionals” box. Unlimited permission to copy this devotional without altering text or profiteering is allowed subject to inclusion of this copyright notice.
Ecclesiastes 12:10-The Teacher sought to find delightful sayings and to accurately write words of truth. (Holman CSB)