Links Daily Devotional

‘Well Pleased’

…and behold, a voice from heaven said, “This is my beloved Son, with whom I am well pleased.” (Matthew 3:17, ESV)

The TV audience for the NCAA Division 1 men’s golf championship matches was probably not large, but those who watched it through saw some special things.

Most of those weren’t golf shots, though there were some good ones.

What impressed me was relationships. The relationship of the players to their opponents, of the players to their teammates, of the players to their coaches, and of the parents to the players.

One match that stood out relationally—and also had a compelling golf story—proved to be the final match of the event. The winner would secure the NCAA championship for his school and a place in history for himself and his teammates.

God’s love is constant, and his approval is earned by what comes out of our hearts, not the outcome of events.I was a bit conflicted about whom to pull for. The Texas player was Taylor Funk, the son of PGA Tour Champions player Fred Funk. I met the family a few years ago when Fred spoke at an event at a church near me.

Playing for Oregon was Sulman Raza. It was a home event for the Ducks and for Raza, who grew up in Eugene where they were playing. More important to me was that the coach of Oregon, Casey Martin, is the son of King Martin, who happens to serve on the national board of Links Players and is someone I consider a friend.

A reporter interviewed Sharon Funk about Taylor. She spoke not of golf but of prayer and prayer warriors, and I pulled for him more. Then the cameras focused on Casey, and as I watched him interact with his player I pulled for him more. I didn’t want either player to lose.

Ultimately neither did, but on the third extra hole Raza won. In the midst of the celebration King Martin found his son in the crowd, tapped him on the shoulder, and when Casey turned around the look on his father’s face did not say, “Congratulations”; it said “You are my son, and in you I am well pleased.”

It is the look I want to see on God’s face. I won’t have to win a championship for it, but then neither would Casey. I’m sure he has seen that look on his father’s face before, and he’ll see it again, regardless of the score.

We don’t earn our heavenly Father’s love, and victories don’t get automatic approval. God’s love is constant, and his approval is earned by what comes out of our hearts, not the outcome of events.

Let’s remember that as we go through life, and may our hearts always bring the look of, “You are my child, and in you I am well pleased” to our Father’s face.

Lewis Greer
June 7, 2016
Copyright 2016 Links Players International
The Links Daily Devotional appears Monday-Friday at www.linksplayers.com.