The PGA Championship is taking place right now, and a few of the top golfers will soon turn their attention to the Rio Olympics. However, despite golf returning as an Olympic sport after a very long hiatus, many of the best players are turning down the opportunity to play on the world’s stage.
Rory McIllroy recently created a media stir after commenting about his decision to skip the Summer Olympics. When asked if he and others (like Jordan Spieth) were letting the game down, Rory’s response was this:
“I don’t feel like I’ve let the game down at all. I didn’t get into golf to try and grow the game. I got into golf to win championships and win major championships, and all of a sudden you get to this point and there is a responsibility on you to grow the game, and I get that. But at the same time that’s not the reason that I got into golf. I got into golf to win. I didn’t get into golf to get other people into the game.”
I could argue either side of whether or not golfers should have an active responsibility in growing the game they’ve had the privilege of playing. But just in response to being grateful to the golfers who paved the way for them, I think they’d want to contribute to increasing the number of people who follow the sport.
As followers of Jesus, we are given a clear command to spread the good news and make disciples. Unfortunately, too many of us don’t take that as seriously as we should. We tend to have more of a “Rory mentality” when not choosing to do our part in sharing our faith with others and helping to grow the number of people who follow Jesus.
Telling people about the transforming power of Jesus, and what He’s done in our lives, should be a wonderful privilege we act on as often as possible. We are given this responsibility in Matthew 28:18-20 (ESV), known as the Great Commission:
“And Jesus came and said to them, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you. And behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age.”
Expanding the game of golf is a nice idea, and Rory could do more to make it happen, but each one of us has the greater role of pointing people to Jesus and explaining how He can change their lives. The more we appreciate His grace toward us, the more we desire to further His wonderful message. I’m Bryce Johnson and you can unpack that!
PRAYER: Heavenly Father, thank you for allowing me to understand who Jesus is and what He’s done for me. Please give me opportunities to share this wonderful news with others, so they too can be transformed by Your power. Provide me the boldness and willingness to do my part in furthering the Gospel. In Jesus’ name I pray, Amen.