Friday I got to play just my second round of golf all summer. A good friend convinced me to get out on one of the hottest days of the summer, but it was great. I had hoped to get out more and use the new set of clubs I received last summer for my 50th birthday, but it just hasn’t happened.
I set four goals for my round… (1) to stay spirit controlled and enjoy the day; (2) to not hit any shots out-of-bounds; (3) to not lost a ball; and (4) to break 100.
When you don’t play much, it’s really important to stay focused and concentrate… at least for me it is. And although I wasn’t scoring well, I was enjoying the day and on pace with my 4 goals. Until…
… until I answered the telephone. Yes, I know… one of the cardinal sins on a golf course. The person calling was a colleague at work, and I just knew I needed to answer – hoping it would be a short one.
10 minutes later – and three shots while he was talking – my concentration was nowhere to be found. I allowed a distraction to derail my “zone”… and it took it’s toll with an 8 and a 7.
It bugs me when I let technology run my life. It’s a phone… it has voice mail for a reason. But no… I treat it too often like an electronic monitoring bracelet they put on prisoners out on parole to keep track of their location.
Louis Oosthuizen, the winner of the 2010 British Open, said in the TV interview after winning that he suffered from letting his mind wander during a round. A sports psychologist suggested putting a red dot on his golf glove. At the beginning of his pre-shot routine, he looks at the spot, helping him refocus and relax, and block out all distractions. I think I need a “red dot”… about the size of the Target logo.
And then I think about how often I get distracted when I get alone with God. It often doesn’t take much to de-rail my there, too.
In Numbers 15:37, God spoke to Moses and instructed the people of Israel to make tassels on the corners of their garments and to mark each corner tassel with a blue thread. The idea was a lot like the red dot… when they looked at the tassel, they would remember and keep all the commandments of God, and not get distracted by their surroundings, their feelings, their circumstances, and themselves.
Hmm… red dot or blue tassel? I probably need both of them.