Golfers More Devastated by the Loss

Published on June 19, 2017 | By

Brooks Koepka won his first major championship by dominating the U.S. Open this past weekend, and finishing 16 under par while tying a record. 

As impressive as his victory was, there is even more discussion about who didn’t win. Where was Rory, Dustin, Day, and Spieth?

I was rooting for Rickie Fowler, who was in contention all weekend, but he ended up tied for 5th. He's played well in majors (he added his sixth career top five in the last 24 majors), yet he hasn’t been able to finish on top. 

Fowler is one of the most liked golfers on tour, and was rallying the fans at Erin Hills. However, until he wins a big one, he’ll continue to receive criticism from the media. The standard for all of the top golfers in today’s game is Tiger Woods. We all know how phenomenal he was as a player, as well as, how committed he was to winning.   

I read an article about this today on golfdigest.com. Brian Wacker wrote these intriguing comments: “This isn’t to say today’s stars aren’t driven to succeed…but they don’t seem to burn with the same intensity as many past champions, and especially Woods. Not once did Fowler mention being disappointed, upset, mad or annoyed. It’s a different approach for this group.” 

I appreciate Fowler’s positive attitude and fun-loving spirit, but I also understand the point Wacker is making about wanting our stars to be more devastated by a loss. 

As I reflect on this mentality and how it affects our own lives, I consider the approach and response we have toward sin. When we give into temptation or disobey God, do we blow it off as just another loss...or are we devastated and mad about our decisions?

It’s not that we stay in a state of despair or shame, but instead, our grieving of sin leads us to the cross of Christ where we find forgiveness and grace. 

We acknowledge we sinned against God, but as we confess, we are driven deeper into thankfulness and love for Jesus. We realize even more clearly our need for His strength and grace and the ugliness of our brokenness. 

James 4:7-10 (NLT) says, "So humble yourselves before God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you. Come close to God, and God will come close to you. Wash your hands, you sinners; purify your hearts, for your loyalty is divided between God and the world. "Let there be tears for what you have done. Let there be sorrow and deep grief. Let there be sadness instead of laughter, and gloom instead of joy. Humble yourselves before the Lord, and He will lift you up in honor."

Today, as we desire the top golfers who fell short in the U.S. Open to allow their disappointment to cause them to strengthen their game for the next major, let’s be encouraged to allow the disappointment from our sin to cause us to humble ourselves and strengthen ourselves in the Lord. I’m Bryce Johnson and you can unpack that! 

PRAYER: Heavenly Father, I confess my brokenness and desperate need for Your grace. I humbly come before You, grieved by my sin, but filled with thankfulness for the cross of Christ. Thank you for Your deep love. In Jesus’ name I pray, Amen.


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