Links Daily Devotional

Blowing Winds

You have turned cruel to me; with the might of your hand you persecute me. You lift me up on the wind; you make me ride on it, and you toss me about in the roar of the storm. (Job 30:21- 22, ESV)

Like tens of thousands of others around the world, I’m doing a “read through the Bible in one year” plan on YouVersion, the popular Bible app. Whether you’ve done a similar plan before or never done one, I highly recommend it. Using an app like YouVersion makes it much easier, and it can even open your mind to scriptures you may have missed in the past.

Take today’s two verses, for instance. These are words spoken by Job to God while Job was in the midst of his suffering. I’ve read Job several times and have about 10 commentaries on it, not because I’ve suffered like him but because one day I intend to write a musical based on Job. In spite of all that, I had never really picked up on these verses until the other day when I was driving and listening to my daily reading in the car.

“You lift me up on the wind,” the voice said. “You make me ride on it and toss me about in the roar of the storm.” The voice kept going, but my mind didn’t hear it because it was saying, “So that’s how a golf ball feels on a windy day!”

I wasn’t taking Job’s lament lightly, but in that moment my experience with golf and with life gave me a new insight into a scripture I’d read but never seen.

The wind can be more challenging for a golfer than rain or cold, because it is an element that wants to wrest control of the ball away from you. It makes you guess at its velocity and direction, it makes you ask whether you want the ball to ride it or fight it, and it tricks you into trying to hit shots that you rarely practice.

Two famous holes where the wind is often a factor are the twelfth at Augusta and the seventh at Pebble Beach. The latter of those is only a little more than 100 yards long, yet Sam Snead said he had hit everything from a sand wedge to a 4-iron off the tee. One year the wind was so strong, he even putted down the slope!

When your life feels like it is being blown about by the wind and tossed about in the roar of the storm, do you simply ride it out? Do you fight it? Do you try to change the way you live just to deal with the wind?

What I’d like to suggest is that you apply Tom Watson’s technique for wind play to your life. He won five British Opens, after all, and nearly a sixth, and the wind always blows at the Open Championship. But Tom didn’t try to hit the ball low or high or curve it one way or another to accommodate the wind; he just hit the ball solid and it went through the wind. Sometimes more or less club was required, but his key was to stay consistent and hit it solid.

Thinking about all that, I had even more empathy for Job. His life was out of his control and he expressed that in a picture that thousands of years later every golfer could understand. Live your life solidly and consistently, the same way you try to play golf. Job had done that and was still doing it, and even though he felt helpless for a season, he made it through the wind and landed softly in God’s loving hands.

Lewis Greer

February 12, 2013

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