I was talking to a group recently and mentioned setting a record in a high school golf tournament. As a sophomore, I earned a score of 100 on nine holes.
If you don’t play golf, you need to know that the lowest score wins. And that professional golfers routinely score between 65 and 70 for eighteen holes.
After the meeting, someone asked about it. I said I hit 25 strokes on the first hole alone. And then I described the beginning of the hole, and my first six strokes (into water from the tee twice). I also remember the next three, and the last four. The other twelve are lost at the moment.
And then I realized that I was remembering details from one game of golf in 1973. Forty-four years ago.
At the time no one shamed me. No one mocked me. They may have pitied me a bit. But I didn’t need their help. I’ve been laughing and cringing about it for decades.
I remember several other moments from my golfing life. Almost all of them are memories of mistakes, frustration, anger, and struggle. Almost none of them are about walking with my dad on a beautiful course in Grantsburg, Wisconsin.
I think that God invites us out of remembering the frustration of our failures. Like when Jesus invites his disciples to rest in him. And when Paul invites us to forget what is behind.
And I think that God may invite us to stop and remember the moments that we were walking on the golf course or down the hospital corridor with him.
It’s easier, I admit, to remember the details of my horrible round. But at the moment, I think I want to spend time remembering the walking with.
I’m working on a hospital journal idea.