Book Review: Golf’s Sacred Journey

One of my absolute favorite activities is randomly sending books to my friends. Sometimes, it’s a ‘just because’ moment and at other times, what I’ve read makes me think of them. I know they are going through a hard time, or faced with a challenging situation and I have a feeling the selected book can help. It’s my signature mark. Rarely am I on the receiving end.

On Friday night, the boys alerted me to a package on the front porch. They know the drill in this COVID environment: no one touches anything until Mama has a chance to sanitize the package. I opened the door and looked down at the yellow padded envelope. A huge grin formed spanning ear to ear as I glanced at who sent the package. I instantly knew that whatever was in the package, was going to be great. Pam only sends the best over. Just as the book says, “Every so often in life, an extraordinary relationship unfolds in the most unexpected place.”

What was in the package? Golf’s Sacred Journey: Seven Days At The Links of Utopia and TIME magazine with selected articles on Success. This woman knows me. We met a few years ago when I moved to Virginia and instantly formed a tight connection. She is a fierce, passionate lady who loves life. She speaks her mind, and is the type of friend that tells you what you need to hear, not what you want to hear. If I had to sum her up on one word, it would be genuine (and firecracker).

I opened the book, read the first chapter to the kiddos for their bedtime story. My first thought: ‘This is good!’ The book is so wonderfully written with such descriptive detail that the movie unfolds in your mind. The book chronicles the journey of a superficial golfer who is on the brink of making it on the PGA tour but disaster strikes on his tournament. Not wanting to face his fans, or the press, he quickly scurries out of town and is faced with a crossroads. One way is a sign to ‘Utopia’, and the other…another Texas town. He chooses ‘Utopia’ and steps in to his destiny.

While in Utopia, he meets the wise sage, Johnny who offers him to spend a week in Utopia with him and guarantees at the end of the week his life would be changed. While the lessons were formed around golf, they had a deeper meaning. He learns how to trust himself, leveraging the confidence that is within and forcing himself to think deeply about why he behaves the way he does building up a solid foundation.

Johnny educates him on the importance of reflection…how appropriate is that in life, especially now, and highlights that contemplation is crucial in the change process. I don’t know about you, but in the pre-COVID environment I was in a ‘go-go-go’ state of mind, and now, COVID has forced the family (and me) to slow down. What do I want in life? What do I want to be? What kind of legacy do I want to leave?

Johnny shares a three word mantra that forms the base of the golfer’s transformation – see, feel, trust. And that mantra is applicable not only to golf, but whatever situation/goal you are faced with in life. In order to achieve it, you have to see it. Your training has set you up and taught you the next steps, intuitively, of what’s required and finally, it’s time to execute and trust yourself.

The daily teachings and transformation that the golfer went through was so exciting to watch. BUT. Nothing prepared me for Chapter 9 – tears flowed the entire time. It was at this point, the golfer realized that his life has a deeper meaning, and that meaning is driven by God. Once again, the wise sage delivers: “It is our job to seek God and listen to His calling for our lives, I believe that He sent me to you at this time in your life.” It is at this point, the golfer realizes that he has a purpose – he doesn’t know what it is going to be used for yet, but he soon finds out. He accepts God, and decides to carry on a life steeped in fulfilling his God given potential.

This book is a fantastic, feel good, highly applicable read. Filled with motivational nuggets throughout the book, sports psychologist David Cook delivers on an outstanding, motivational and highly applicable resource for all golfers, leaders and purpose seekers alike. This book has found its home on my shelf filled with the few books that meet this outstanding quality: The Book of Joy, A New Earth, The Alchemist, Big Magic and The Labyrinth Influence. I hope you enjoy!

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