Next week it will be eight months since my brother Steve left us. I have to admit the sadness of his passing still burns in my soul. When I am at a low point of my grief I often reflect on a time when we were together. It helps.
For some reason this week I thought about when Steve, Sonya and I, unfortunately Susan could not go with us, attended a convention in Phoenix, Arizona. After a couple of days of meetings we decided to play golf. I called a local course to see if we could get a tee time. “Do you have anything open around 11:00 am?” The man at the other end of the line said it was wide open and penciled us in to go off hole number 1 around 11:00 am.
When we got to the course hardly no one was there. The course looked beautiful and I could not understand why there weren’t golfers covering up this pristine track. The first clue of this abandoned course should have been when we were asked, “You’re not from around here are you?” The men chuckled as we said we were from Ohio and wished us well as we headed for the first tee.
After the second hole I realized what the joke was. It was early June, in the middle of the desert and the temperature was 107. No one played during the early afternoon, except two goons from Ohio who just simply didn’t know better. When we went inside at the turn we bought four Gatorades a piece. The men laughing now said, “Hey if you can’t finish we can return half your money.” Instinctively Steve said, “No man, it’s great out there!” As we went back outside I wondered why we didn’t take the cash and just face our defeat. Steve on the other hand, wasn’t going to let them have the last laugh. He would say, “I’ll show them we may play 36 holes!”
That was my brother. He was head strong and unflappable, but loving to a fault. His character was always about truth, honesty, and caring for others.
John 15:13 “Greater love has no one than this, that he lay down his life for his friends.”
Live a life that impacts the people around you. Love as God loves, and live as if there is no tomorrow. Steve left a legacy of service and commitment. He made all who knew him a better person, believer and servant. Thanks Stev.
Think I’ll go to Phoenix this summer for a round of golf, or maybe not.