Apr 20, 2015 / Life

Wanting It Too Much

Every year in April an exclusive sporting event is held just a couple hours from Atlanta. The Masters at Augusta National Golf Course has become a fun tradition to my family as we get together for a 4 day weekend of playing golf, watching the tournament, and eating way too much food.

This year one thing that stuck out to me was the added pressure to one athlete in particular; Rory McIlroy. Rory has experienced enormous success in his professional career at a very young age. He’s already won three of the four major tournaments and is a Masters victory away from being one of only six professional golfers to complete the career grand slam.

Rory almost won the masters a few years back. He had a big lead going into the final nine holes. He shanked a shot deep into the woods on the 10th tee and was never the same that day but he credits the lessons he learned with helping him become a much better golfer.

This year Rory felt the pressure to win at Augusta. He wanted it badly. He probably wanted it too much. Rory played the first 36 holes conservatively and barely made the cut. He was out of contention by the weekend but with no pressure he managed to have an incredible Saturday and Sunday.

Looking at his performance it made me realize how much we press for things that we really want. How our performance in some areas actually decreases when we put pressure on ourselves to accomplish a goal. For Rory, the course at Augusta gets in his head a little too much. He’s not being aggressive when he should because he’s afraid to play bad early but on the weekend when there’s no expectation for him to win he plays great. He’s done this the last two years!

In my own life I have a very obvious goal that stands out. I want to be married and have a family. I want it pretty badly. And I’ve been close to marriage before, and I learned a lot of lessons when it didn’t work out. It’s something I feel myself pressing for, trying too hard, constantly analyzing why I’m not there yet.

I think one thing God is teaching me right now is that as I hand over my goals, my desires, my future, he is way more in control than when I try and press for them on my own. There’s a lot of peace as I let my goals go and try instead to just live in the moment.

One of the things that’s encouraged me in this is the knowledge that God created me with the desires that are in my heart. They’re not bad. He just wants me to be balanced in my life and not let any one thing dominate my priorities.

There’s a calmness in handing over things you want to God. You may never get them back. You may get to experience them in new unexpected ways. But there’s a lot more peace when you don’t have to anxiously pursue something and can trust God to provide what you need.

It’s not easy and it’s a daily struggle for me. This is not a lesson I’ve mastered in any way but I’m excited to be learning it now.