This Year… Golf Lessons Finally and What it Means for YL Leadership

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Over the summer I normally try to post a couple things that I learned over the previous school year. If you want see the series as it has developed over lots of years then click here. If you have anything you learned from last year that you would like to tell me about, send it my way smcgever (at) pv dot younglife dot org

If you like golf you are going to love and hate the details in this post. Some of you may know that I recently had a sabbatical with YL and spent three months with my family living in St. Andrews, Scotland. There I spent a lot of time with my family, spent a lot of time working on my PhD (when I’m not on sabbatical I do this in my spare time), and a lot of time playing golf. Since I am an alumni and past student of the Univ. of St. Andrews I can buy a student pass to play unlimited golf at all seven of the courses in St. Andrews, including the Old Course. I will spare you the details of how great this was, just check my personal fb or Twitter if you want to know more.

Here is the point… After about 6 weeks I decided to dig deep into my pockets and pay for golf lessons. You see, I am a self-taught golfer. I taught myself to play using my grandma’s golf clubs while watching Ken Venturi give tips before commercials during golf tournaments on TV. And all of that served me pretty well… I made our very competitive high school golf team and can usually beat most of my friends at golf. This isn’t to brag, this is to set up my point. I figured I would never need lessons, and I certainly would not pay money for them. But, I had certain goals in my head about what I wanted to score during this time on sabbatical, so I went and paid for lessons (also the technology they have there is used for testing at the R&A and I figured the pros at the course where they invented the rules of golf would likely be pretty decent… golf… blah blah blah… golf… sorry to bore most of you).

Guess what? I got better, a lot better… quickly. Within a week I was playing the best golf I’ve ever played in my life, within a few weeks it was even better. I’ve been able to play a little since being back and the results have lasted.

Here is what is means for YL Leadership. All of us in YL could grow if we asked for lessons. Lessons in being a YL leader, being on YL staff, lessons in discipleship, evangelism, theology, people skills, fundraising, and more from our other ministry friends… even where we may be quite strong already! In fact, that might be the most important area to ask for more help. My challenge is this: ask yourself where you could use some lessons in your YL leadership? Maybe even be willing to pay for it with your time, talent and treasure. One area I’ve been trying to do this is in discipleship, I want to get better personally and I also think the church-at-large, and YL as well, could grow a lot in this. Sign me up for lessons!

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