Sam Snead once said, “Of all the hazards, fear is the worst.” Jack Nicklaus wrote, “ . . . fear of any kind is the number one enemy of all golfers, regardless of ball-striking and shot-making capabilities.”
Fear puts all sorts of things in your mind. Rather than focusing on the shot, you become preoccupied with where not to go and what not to do. Butch Harmon, the great golf teacher, once said, “. . . we get so afraid of hitting bad shots, we don’t let ourselves hit the good ones.”
Mr. Snead might have been talking about what fear does to a golfer, but he could have been talking about what fear does to us in our everyday life. In golf, fear can ruin a day on the course; in life, fear can wreak havoc and cause chaos. Fear keeps us from loving deeply, keeps us from giving freely and keeps us from dreaming wildly. I know people who let fear control them and lead them to live their lives in a way different than God intended for them to live. They seek out the safest thing, the safest place, the most secure feeling. But God never placed us on this earth to be safe. God placed us on this earth for a great adventure of how He is going to work in our lives.
Years ago, I heard that “fear not” was found in the Bible 365 times; once for each day of the year. I thought about printing my own calendar and placing a different “fear not” verse on each day. What a source of hope and confidence it would be to begin each and every day by meditating on the fact that we don’t have to fear whatever we have to face.
But I discovered that “fear not” nor any of its close derivatives can be found in the Bible 365 times, but Jesus did command us, “Don’t be afraid.” And for me, hearing it once from Jesus is just as good as hearing it 365 times. Now it is time for us to live it . . .