Focus Like a Golfer {i'm not a golfer}

{tiger woods u.s. open 2012}

In case you didn't realize, this weekend is the U.S. Open golf tournament. It's hard to miss in our household as dinner, Sabbath cleaning and family time were quick breaks between the game today. I can't complain. This isn't an everyday occurrence. And Daniel let me get a little break while he prepped supper--iPad propped up so he could watch the game while peeling potatoes for our homemade fries.

I watched only briefly--to comment on Graeme McDowell's pink pants or confirm that Tiger is not crying and in fact has allergies. But mostly, I'm entertained by the background noise of the commentators as they fill the silence with discussing Bubba Watson's giant watch or speculating whether or not the golfers pay any attention to the crowd around them. Apparently Arnold Palmer does.

Then, they predict the golfer's strategy followed by their own unsolicited advice on maneuvering this particular hole. Imagine that--people sitting around on the outside, stating their opinions on how a professional should do his job. I've never seen that before. (Note sarcasm.)

Truth is: it happens all the time. Unwelcome opinions are given frequently. Unsolicited advice, unwanted criticism, constructive or not. Sometimes it's good, sometimes it's bad. Most of the time, it just confuses us and distracts us from what really matters. So how do we keep it all straight? Where do we focus? Who do we listen to?

I think we'd do well to learn from the golfers.

Watch as the crowd around them shares their muffled opinion with the person next to them or cheers as they walk past. More often than not, the golfers don't seem to notice. They don't hear the commentators on TV and they don't care what Joe Schmo is saying on the side lines. That would be ridiculous! They are focused on the hole. Tuning in to their training and practice. Ignoring the voices that don't matter, to tune in to the one that does.

Shouldn't we do more of that in our own lives? I know I should! Less caring what So-and-So said about me or wondering if Jane Somebody would approve. Less looking across the way to see how the Joneses are living their lives and less letting their opinions affect how I live mine.

All replaced with more of Jesus.

More of His direction and caring about His opinion. More of tuning everything (and everyone) else out to focus on Him.

Maybe then the ball would get closer to where it needs to be. Maybe then my life would get back on track with the incredible plans He has for me. Maybe then I'd stop be a wavering child and become a true disciple--with focus like a golfer.