Weekend Thought: We think we know what's best

Halifax Minster
Halifax Minster

Tommy Bolt, winner of the 1958 US Open, tells a story of something that happened during one of his golf tournaments.

Bolt arrived at the golf course for the tournament and was approached by a youngster, “Mr. Bolt, do you need a caddy, sir?”

Bolt asked about the youngster and was told, “He’s a real good caddy, knows the course, the greens, and the rules of the game - but he talks a lot.”

So Bolt went back to the youngster and said, “You can caddy for me on one condition: Don’t say a word.” The young man accepted and carried Bolt’s bag. The first three rounds went well, and Bolt was in contention in the fourth round, when an errant tee shot landed in the rough. From there, it was a difficult shot to the green.

Bolt asked his caddy what he should do but the kid shook his head and never said a word. Bolt grabbed a six iron and hit the ball to within three feet of the hole. As they walked to the green, Bolt said, “Aren’t you going to say something, after seeing a shot like that?” His caddy replied, “Mr. Bolt, that wasn’t your ball.”

There are times in our lives when we have been hesitant, for whatever reason, to listen to the advice of someone else. We think we know what’s best and there’s no one who can tell us anything that we don’t already know. We are sometimes even hesitant to take advice from God. We get it in our heads that we know what’s best and so it doesn’t really matter what God has to say.

Tommy Bolt found out the hard way what happens when we refuse to listen. May we have the humility to listen and to learn.