I played golf with Tiger once. We were in a final day foursome in a Junior Golf Tournament in Long Beach, California when I was 10. Even then he was an enormous media draw. My friends and I started the day double digits back of Tiger. It may have been triple digits by the time the day was over. I tell the more complete story the book, Jesus: the Powerful Servant.
He and I are the same age, and grew up about five miles apart. There is just a tad of difference between our golf games 🙂. I have followed his career with great interest, and believe he is the greatest golfer to ever step foot on a golf course. I admire his clutch performance, and his commitment to discipline.
Sometimes those who are extremely disciplined in their discipline lack discipline at the things that actually require the most discipline (say that 10 times fast). When I heard of the wreck, and now what seems to be multiple extra-marital affairs, I was genuinely sad. I feel no need to come down on Tiger. He has only begun to pay his dues for his moral mistakes. In a world where you are one of the five most recognizable faces on a planet of nearly 7 billion people, your successes and your failures are magnified and hyperbolized.
In his public statement released Wednesday morning, Tiger says, "I have let my family down and I regret those transgressions with all of my heart. I have not been true to my values and the behavior my family deserves. I am not without faults and I am far short of perfect. I am dealing with my behavior and personal failings behind closed doors with my family. Those feelings should be shared by us alone."
If I were Tiger, I wouldn't hold my breath for that privacy.
Instead, I would use this as a time to repent and change. Seek God's forgiveness and that of your wife and children. Then change. Seek to be a better man even as, but before, you seek to be a better golfer. A Tiger Woods as devoted and disciplined toward God and his family as he is to golf would be a fearsome sight to the Evil One, indeed.
Tiger ends his statement with: "I will strive to be a better person and the husband and father that my family deserves. For all of those who have supported me over the years, I offer my profound apology." Is this apology sincere? Will he strive to be a person, husband and father? We'll see. I choose to believe so. We all should.