Links Daily Devotional

The Winning Attitude, Part 10

In every thing give thanks: for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning you. (1 Thessalonians 5:18, KJV)

Orville’s brow was furrowed, head tilted down. I could see the wavy top of his head as he walked toward me on the putting green. I shook my head. This is not going to be easy, I thought. He’s depressed.

“Bad round, Sarge?”

“I’m yipping every putt.”

The Sarge, Orville Moody, had caught the Tour player’s most debilitating disease, the yips

It was Monday. Orville and I had just finished our most trying time of the week: Qualifying day for the Minnesota Golf Classic in St. Paul. I played well that day and got in without much trouble. The Sarge had been in a playoff.

“Get in, Sarge?”

He nodded, then dropped three balls on the green a few feet from me. “I nearly holed my second shot, hit it so close even I could make it.”

“Well done.”

“But I’m a basket case. Feel like I’m going to yip every putt. Mike Hadlock said it might help me to go to your Bible study.”

I tried not to chuckle. Mike Hadlock had qualified for the Tour with Orville and me at the end of 1967 at Tour School. He was a regular at our fellowship. “Why don’t you come tomorrow night? We’re meeting at the Holiday Inn.”

“I used to read the Bible, but after I joined the Army I forgot it all.”

He came Tuesday. Afterwards we had some time alone in the Scriptures. I felt I should share with him two verses. First, Mark 5:36: “Be not afraid, only believe.” And second, “In everything give thanks: for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning you.” We spent about an hour together and I kept referring back to these two commands of our Lord which had both impacted my life in a major way. I stressed the importance of offsetting fear and negative thoughts with believing in God and praying prayers of thanksgiving.

I saw Orville on Thursday after the first round in the locker room. “How’d you do today?”

“I’m still yipping,” he said. “But I said some thank yous out there. I’m also cross-handing. Feels a little better.”

“Stick with it, Sarge. Giving thanks is a powerful substitute for fear.”

“Yes, sir.”

I smiled. I felt as if he was saluting me. We parted. As he walked away I felt a tinge of fear. This man is one of the most talented shotmakers in golf, I thought, but will these verses help him overcome the yips?

I’d have to wait and see.

(Next month Jim Hiskey will write about what happened to Orville Moody and complete his series on The Winning Attitude.)

Jim Hiskey
November 21, 2013
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