It's December. The air is colder. The rain is coming much too frequently. The wind is much too brisk. This is not golf weather. What does a person, whose only weekly distraction is golf, do with himself when he cannot play golf? When I figure that out I'll let you know. No, seriously, I have no idea. There are any number of things that could serve as substitutes.

I could play cards. There are a myriad of card games available. I remember playing euchre growing up with my family. My wife and I were introduced to pinochle sometime in the seventies. Of course, as a kid there were those poker games where the "guys" would get together and play for matchsticks. Now, everyone and his uncle is playing Texas Hold 'em. Guess I could try that.

Could go back to bowling. My wife and I used to bowl a lot. We were both in singles leagues during one season and a doubles league the next. We would set up bowling nights for the church after evening services or even do a lock-in for the youth where they bowled all night. But trying to draw to an inside straight isn't as exciting as hitting a three wood to a par five and realizing that you could go two under with an eagle putt. And who really wants to play a sport that has a seven ten split when you can drain that thirty-five footer to save a double bogie?

There is no substitute for golf. No other sport combines all the elements that golf does without demanding that you run to do them. No fear of being hit because you have the ball, no need to dribble the ball and then give it to someone else for the shot, no need to chase a ball just to return it over a net only to have to chase it again. There is no substitute. There is no substitute for God, either.

There is no one else to whom we can pray. There is no one else who cares what really happens every day of our lives. There is no one else who loves us without reservation just because we're us. There is no one else who will listen to our problems and not roll their eyes. When all around is chaos all we have to do is stop and there is God. "Be still and know that I am God." Psalms 46:10 God. There is no substitute.