On Monday, September 20 104 golfers gathered at the Fox Hills Golf Course west of Plymouth, Michigan. Their purpose was two-fold: (1) enjoy a round of golf, and (2) raise money for Cass Community Social Services (CCSS). This was the 4th annual Cass Golf Scramble. I have to admit that I was walking pretty tall as the lead pastor of Nardin Park. We had six foursomes (24) participating in the Scramble – five foursomes of men and 1 foursome of women. Approximately $24,000 was raised for Cass with $4,000 coming from the golfers and contributors from Nardin Park. With the decline in corporate sponsorships it was important to get more people involved and we did!
CCSS is devoted to making a profound difference in thousands of lives by fighting poverty and creating opportunity for the poor, underserved, and overlooked in the community of Detroit. They offer numerous avenues of hope to the many that walk through their doors every day, including: the Safe Haven program for mentally ill men, the Transitional Housing program for chronically addicted men, Mom’s Place for homeless women and children, the Skill Building Programs for adults with developmental disabilities, the Vocational Training Program/Permanent Jobs for unemployed adults, two Emergency Shelters, the providing of 20,000 meals a week to homebound seniors and homeless people, and Youth Services such as musical, mentoring and recreational opportunities. Reverend Faith Fowler is the director and the incredible energy behind these ministries and the wonderful staff that coordinates all of these programs.
I gladly admit that I am not much of a golfer, but I do enjoy being on the links with friends. I especially love the scramble format, where we play the best ball hit by one of the four team members. One of the requirements is that each golfer must have three of their drives be used during the 18 holes of play. So the pressure is on! Wherever the best shot lands becomes the spot for the rest of us to hit from for the next shot. At one time or another we depend on each other to make our way through the course.
I think there is a spiritual idea in all of this. As people of faith we are in a scramble counting on one another to successfully play the course of life. Yet all too often we play like we are the only ones in the game. If we could just relax and learn to depend on one another, how much better living out our discipleship could be. Will other people let us down? Sometimes. After all, I even let myself down from time to time. All four of our foursome missed the same six foot putt, but at the end of the day we still shot a score of five-under par. No matter what the score, I believe we do better when we work together, talk together, have fun together, and do things together. You see, other people also lift us up. We need each other to become the best person that we can be.
See you on the Golf Course. I’m usually the one looking for the lost ball!