Witnessing Tips from Tiger Woods
- 2004 4 Oct
I recently was asked to speak at a marriage conference. The title of my message was to be called, "Roadblocks – What kind of roadblocks exist within your marriage that keep it from being all that God wants it to be, and more importantly, what can you do about it?"
I hardly felt qualified to give this talk not only because I am certainly no expert on marriage, but there were so many there at the conference who were more equipped than I. My pastor was there; a couple who had been married far longer than Chelsea and I was there, and even my brother-in-law (with my sister) was there. He is obviously qualified because, (as I told him in front of the other couples) he has been married to my little sister for seven years... so he's clearly been anointed with the spiritual gifts of patience, long-suffering, and self-control. I informed the other couples that he is also a NHL hockey player... so he knows what it feels like to get beat up on and off the ice! I'm sure he would have had some wonderful tips on how to make our marriages flourish.
As I did my best to talk of some of the roadblocks within my own marriage of 13 years, I told the story of walking through an airport and noticing a large poster of Tiger Woods on the 18th green of a beautiful golf course, with a huge crowd surrounding him. But instead of acknowledging the scenery, Tiger was stooping down with hands cupped around the sides of his eyes and brim of his cap, so that he saw only what was in front of him- his critically important putt. The caption above his head read, "Sometimes to accomplish more, you have to see less."
That really stuck with me. Not only is it true in golf, but also in marriage. Sometimes, to accomplish more in your marriage and family life, you have to see less. The lesson for me, was to learn how to block out some of the distractions of my busy life (like computers, cell-phones, TV, etc.) and focus more time on those people who are most important in my life - my wife and children. It is important to do this because, as Tiger knows, you often only have one shot at important moments in life and then the opportunity is gone. So I am trying to accomplish the most, by seeing a bit less these days.
I had the wonderful opportunity to share my faith with two men the other day. They were installing an "invisible fence" for our family dog (who is a certified escape artist). When they finished, I gave them each a million dollar bill tract and a Left Behind II tract. They said they had seen the movie but the younger man wasn't a Christian. He grew up Catholic, but had been disillusioned by the church and had strayed away from God. I swung to the subject of the gospel.
In my younger days as a Christian, I probably would have felt the need to debate issues of Catholicism, such as the Apocrypha, praying to saints, Mary's perpetual virginity, the infallibility of the Pope, etc. before I even got to the subject of the gospel (which is the power of God to salvation).
But I know from experience that focusing on sideline issues eats up precious time and can waste an important opportunity. Instead, I remembered what Tiger had taught me in the airport - "Sometimes, to accomplish more you have to see less."
Like Jesus did so many times when he spoke with unbelievers, I blocked out the distracting arguments, and focused upon two things only. My goal was to help this young man (1.) see his sin clearly and thoroughly (which allows him to understand his personal need of a Savior) and (2.) see God's amazing love demonstrated towards him on the Cross.
By ignoring the distractions of religious traditions and fixing my sights upon communicating the pure message of the gospel to this man, we were able to accomplish much, much more! We talked for about 20 minutes and the young man told me how much he really appreciated our discussion. He said that he finally understood the gospel, and that it made sense to turn his heart back to God right away and start reading his Bible again.
"Sometimes, to accomplish more, you have to see less." I don't know if I'll ever be as good as Tiger on the greens, but because of his advice, he's helped me with my marriage and my witnessing technique. Thanks Tiger. I owe you one.
Kirk Cameron is best known as the teen heartthrob Mike Seaver on the television series "Growing Pains." He is also known as Buck Williams from "Left Behind: The Movie." For more articles by Cameron, and many tools that will help you learn to share your faith, visit wayofthemaster.com