Sunday, June 14, 2009

Bethpage and Free Water

This coming week, the US Open Golf Championships will be held at Bethpage Black. The Black course is located in Bethpage State Park, in New York State. Bethpage, with it's relative bargain $120 greens fee for out of state residents, is the blue collar course to the exclusivity of Pebble Beach and Augusta and the exorbitant rates of Pinehurst, Bay Hill or TPC Sawgrass.
In the Sports Illustrated US Open Preview issue, the article Public vs Private compares New York's two Tour venues: Bethpage Black and the brand spanking new Liberty National Golf Club. Bethpage is where groups of strangers can arrive the night before and camp out, drink beer, play poker and swap stories as they wait for one of 6 first come-first serve tee times that are given out each day (the other tee times are via lottery). Liberty National, with its $500,000 initiation fee, is a place where you pay to not have groups in front or behind you on the course.

I was reading Charles Spurgeon's (1834-1892) Morning and Night, and for Morning, June 13 he wrote how Jesus says, "take freely". Come just as you are and "take freely" the water of life. He writes about how beautiful the drinking fountains in England were. No one in their right mind would come to the fountain if they were thirsty and say they couldn't drink because they didn't have five pounds. No matter how torn and tattered they may be dressed, weary and thirsty travelers will freely drink for no other reason than the fountain is there.

The fine gentlemen and ladies in their carriages that pass by, though they may be parched with thirst, will not demean themselves to drink for the fountain of the commoners. In the same way, there are those who are too rich in their own works to freely come to Christ and state, "I will not be saved in the same way as the harlot or the swearer."

Billionaire Jim Clark, founder and member of Liberty National, was asked in the article how he would feel about sleeping in his car to secure a tee time. His response, "I can't imagine having to wait half an hour for a tee time." This is not a diss on Jim Clark. He has earned the right to do with his money whatever he pleases. This is about the rest of us, who do not everyday get the opportunity to walk and play the same course as Tiger, Padraig and Sergio. For that, we will drive hours, sleep in our cars and shank our opening shot on the Number 1 Tee.

"Come!" Whoever is thirsty, let him come;
and whoever wishes, let him take the free gift of the water of life.
Revelation 22:17

1 comment:

Flower in a Field said...
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