Sergio Garcia is the Masters Champion, and now proudly wears the Green Jacket after an impressive four days at Augusta National. He recently gave interesting insight regarding his relationship with this special course:

“When I came here in 1999 as an amateur, I felt like this course was probably going to give me at least one major.

“I’m not going to lie, that thought changed a bit through the years because I started feeling uncomfortable with the course.

“But I made peace with it the last three of four years and I accepted that Augusta gives and takes. And I think because of that I’m able to stand here today.”

One common characteristic among golfers is the desire to control their game. Since it’s an individual sport, guys have the ability to dictate a lot of what happens during the course of a tournament.

But what especially jumped out from Garcia’s comments was he “accepted that Augusta gives and takes.” The truth is, there are many variables that golfers can’t control (as much as they try to) while walking the beautiful fairways at the Masters.

I think it’s natural for golfers to get frustrated when the course gives them something they aren’t expecting, and get out of rhythm because of it. However, the more peace and acceptance a golfer can have about facing what they can’t control, the better off they’re going to be.

Following his win, Garcia admitted, “It was the calmest I ever felt at a major championship on a Sunday. Even the bogeys did not bother me.”

We can learn something important based on Garcia’s realization about Augusta. There are many factors in our own lives which we have no control over, and get discouraged when the shots we take turn out differently than we thought they would.

Although we can’t believe we ended up “in the rough” or hit a “double bogey,” we need to accept that God is in control. The sooner we come to grips with that, the calmer we will be. We can have peace in knowing God is the One who gives and takes away.

In the Bible, we learn about the testing of Job – one of God’s most faithful men. Job 1:21 (NLT) explains how he experienced much, and then lost it all: “I came naked from my mother’s womb,  and I will be naked when I leave. The Lord gave me what I had, and the Lord has taken it away. Praise the name of the Lord!”

Job realized that God was the one who gives and takes away, and he worshiped Him faithfully. Once we stop trying to control everything, and accept that unexpected moments are going to happen, we can experience His amazing peace and comfort. We must trust the One who holds everything in His hands and knows what’s best.

Today, let’s remember to find peace in God when He changes our plans. As He gives and takes away, His love and power always remain…so let’s continue to worship and praise His name! I’m Bryce Johnson and you can unpack that!

PRAYER: Heavenly Father, it’s so easy for me to desire control. Please forgive me for getting frustrated when my plans don’t turn out how I think they should. Help me to recognize that You are in control, and the One who gives and takes away, so in the end that is for my good. Thank you for Your immense love and power. It’s in Jesus’ name I pray, Amen.