Dr. Wall explores two lessons we can all learn from the recent news that golf legend Tiger Woods had an affair. This is Part One of a series on Lessons From Tiger Woods. For Part Two click here. For Part Three click here.
Oh, how the mighty are fallen.
2 Samuel 1:27
Can a man hold a fire in his lap and not be burned?
His commandments are not burdensome.
1 John 5:3
It was a sad day when we found out one of the greatest athletes and sports heroes of our era had feet of clay. Tiger Woods’ recent problems shocked us. He was one of the good guys. An outlier. An exception. A role model. He’d done more for golf than any other person in the history of the sport. A legend. A winning smile. A generous personality. Successful beyond all imagination. A beautiful wife and children. On his way to billionaire status. An inspiration. The world by the tail.
And now this. How many times will we have to hear this story?
I have two take-aways from Tiger Woods’ affair:
Take-away One: How does the man who has everything, need even more?
Tiger is a parable. The longing of the human heart will not find rest until it finds a home with God. As David cries to God:
My soul thirsts for God, for the living God.
We look in vain for these longings to be fulfilled in temporal things. Lust is a cruel master. Flattery leads to the door of death (literally and poetically).
Tiger had everything. He was the ultimate example of the envy of the world. But still it wasn’t enough. Hey, look: If Tiger Woods is still looking for fulfillment, when he is the definition of the American Dream, what about you? Fame isn’t enough. Money isn’t enough. Talent isn’t enough. A beautiful and loving family isn’t enough. Success isn’t enough.
Why? Because this world is NOT our home. You can have everything and still there is an emptiness within that only God can fulfill.
Jesus stood and said in a loud voice, “If anyone is thirsty, let him come to me and drink.
Take-away Two: Maybe the commandment to not commit adultery is, like, you know, ah, a good idea.
How could one fall so far so fast? Our society scoffs at the righteousness of God, but as soon as someone disobeys our innate sense of justice the tongues begin to wag. And chaos is introduced.
Let him who is without sin…
Hey, God loves you. That’s why He gave us His Word: To give us guidance on what works and what doesn’t. His road is the path to peace. It’s rather simple. God’s commandments may not be popular or in vogue. And then you break them and all of a sudden they don’t seem so out of line. He didn’t come up with this stuff to make you miserable or to spoil your fun. You break them, your life is a complete mess; you keep them and your life is full of peace. Hello.
That’s not to say temptation isn’t tempting. It screams from the rooftops that shortcuts are fun. Do your own thing. Life is short. You only go around once. You deserve this. I can make you happy. Rules are boring. Go for the gusto. Do whatever you want. It’s no big deal.
All lies, of course. A better approach? Taking the narrow road that leads to eternal life. That wide road everyone else is taking? Maybe I should pass on that.
The wicked have laid a snare for me, but I do not stray from thy precepts.
Hey, you can do what ever you want. Really. Go ahead. You have the freedom to do your own thing. Scoff at God. No problemo….for now. Until the National Enquirer finds out. Or your wife. Or your husband. Or your kids. Or your boss. Or your colleagues. And then, just like that, the walls come crumbling down.
Better is integrity than all the endorsements of the world. Really. If you have integrity the world stands before you. If you don’t have integrity you ain’t got much and what you do have won’t mean squat.
The man of integrity walks securely, but he who takes crooked paths will be found out.
Found out? That’s an understatement.
For the next two blogs in this series on Lessons From Tiger Woods see:
Dr. Wall draws another lesson from the recent Tiger saga.
Dr Wall laments the cheapening of sexuality in our society and proposes a better way.
See these other blog entries by Dr. Wall on affairs:
The first question that comes up after a trust violation in marriage is: Do both partners need to come to therapy or just the person who violated the trust? Dr. Wall clears the air on this issue and describes the therapeutic process around trust issues.
Dr. Wall discusses how most affairs start: With opening up to someone of the opposite sex about your problems.
Dr. Wall explores what happens when we don’t let integrity rule our hearts: Affairs are right behind.
Dr. Wall contrasts a life of faithfulness with a life of doing your own thing (having an affair).
In this blog Dr. Wall tells the story of a couple he saw where both had had affairs and they were able to work together to heal their wounds and reconnect and have a happy marriage.
To see other blogs from Dr. Wall on affairs click here.