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Stories of Lives Liberated

Millard Waives Admittance to US Open, He (Probably) Cheated

Integrity is a rare trait these days. Whether it’s performance-enhancing drugs, political scandals, or watching yet another public figure admit to being unfaithful to his spouse, there are stories in the news that constantly remind us of the double lives that people live. Even in our day-to-day lives, we’re regularly exposed to friends who let us down, co-workers who lie and slander to get ahead, and parents who break their vows. Can anyone really be trusted?

That’s why it’s refreshing to read about people such as Jason Millard.
Jason Millard is a golfer who recently qualified for the US Open, his first ever major tournament. But there was only one problem, Millard may have grounded his club while hitting out of a bunker – a two-stroke penalty. Grounding happens when you hit the ground before hitting the ball.
Golf is a unique sport in that much of it relies on self-officiating. No one else saw the shot and there was no camera. Millard himself isn’t certain he grounded the ball.
But 90 minutes down the highway, on his way to play in the US Open for the first time, Millard pulled over, called up the USGA, and explained he was disqualifying himself from the US Open for turning in a fraudulent score card. Had he taken the two stroke penalty, he would have missed the US Open by one shot.
Millard explained later that what compelled him to disqualify himself is that something in his heart told him ‘it just didn’t feel right.’ If and when he plays in the US Open, he wants to play with a clear conscience.
There’s something liberating about confessing one’s mistakes and getting the truth out in the open. Nothing in the world can replace the feeling of a clean conscience – not money or fame, and certainly not playing a round of golf in the US Open. Stories like Jason’s cause us to gain respect for men like that, men who are willing to take responsibility for an error and suffer the penalty.
What is it in your life that you’re hiding? What sins and mistakes, lies and deceit, manipulation and immorality are you keeping in the dark? Confessing it all to God and letting him know all your deep dark secrets (He knows them anyways!) and getting them out in the open is the most liberating feeling in all the world. And just like Jason Millard, you’ll gain the respect of God (and of others) for doing so.
Karl Quickert is a pastor at The Rock church and has been doing campus ministry since 2004. He enjoys reading, the outdoors, running, and spending time with his family. He and his wife have been married nine years and have four children.

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