Review from Armchair Interviews on 

This is a book for golfers who are Christians. No, it's a book for Christians who are golfers. Actually it's a book for golfers who believe that golf is the great metaphor for life: You never master the game, you only master the moment. These same golfers also believe that there is a spiritual component to the game they love so much.

And that's what Callaway does in this delightful book--he shows the connection. He shares bits of the world of golf that make so many of us love the game, and helps us see the fit to the everyday world in which we live, and he most often does it with large dose of humor.

For example he shares the world's top twenty golf songs including: "Hit Me with your Best Shot," "Your Cheatin' Heart," "Bridge Over Troubled Water," and "Get A Grip."

He also notes that some of golf's rules are too penal and recommends changes like: A ball in the water is temporarily out of service. I have been punished enough by losing it, so I will close my eyes, throw another ball at the green and play it from there.

Along the way there are some:

-- Great quotes like, "You need a fantastic memory to remember the great shots you've played and a very short memory to forget the bad ones." -- Mac O'Grady)
-- Great tips (The greatest club you'll ever own is a good attitude. Play one shot at a time. Start again on the next hole. If that doesn't work and you've taken more than eighteen shots on the first hole or hit more than one person, ask the starter. Sometimes they'll let you start over again.")
-- Wonderful questions to think about ("Would you agree that failure is succeeding at something that doesn't matter? How can I resist accomplishing this?").

Armchair Interviews says: Any golfer will get the sense that you're reading the writings of someone who is your kindred spirit. Anyone who knows a golfer couldn't go wrong giving this as a gift. - Reviewed by Bob Pike CSP, CPAE-Speakers Hall of Fame

Bob Hope once said, "My favorite hobbies are hunting, fishing and swimming. But, enough talk about my golf game." It is that sort of levity that abounds in Golfing with the Master: Inspiring Stories to Keep You on Course by Phil Callaway. Callaway's 36 short chapters begin with humorous quotes about the game of golf, and end with personal golfing tips from Callaway that are obviously wisdom from a duffer. One example: "Chip the ball when the lie is poor, the green is hard, and you've had a bad day. Pitch the ball when the lie is good, the green is soft, and all is well with the world. If you don't know the difference between a chip and a pitch, just hit the thing."

Obviously, this is not a golf tips book that Tiger Woods or Lee Travino would take advice from. However, that isn't its purpose. By using golf as a metaphor for life, Callaway talks about key issues men need to be concerned about in their Christian walk. If Callaway is talking about "getting out of the rough," it's a golf term that he is applying to the harsh stages of life. My favorite chapter is titled "Clubhouse Christian," in which Callaway talks about golf historians. These fellows can tell you every detail about the rules of golf and its history ("Did you know that Sandra Day O'Connor was the only Supreme Court Justice ever to make a hole in one?"), but they are absolutely terrible at actually playing golf. Callaway says that some Christians are just like that; they can spout dozens of memorized verses, win sword drills, and offer hours of lectures on biblical facts and statistics, but the problem is, they have never used that knowledge to win a soul to Jesus Christ. Ouch! The comparison is blunt, but accurate.

Admittedly, for the non-golfer some of the replayed jokes get stale about half-way through this book, and the passion (obsession?) for golf is not something all men share. Nevertheless, if a reader were to use this book as a devotional text and read just one chapter per morning, it would be a good change of pace prayer and meditation guide. - Dr. Dennis E. Hensley, Christian Book

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