“… without being frightened in any way by those who oppose you. This is a sign to them that they will be destroyed, but that you will be saved – and that by God.” Philippians 1:28

I often find parallels between sport and life. I watched the playoff hole between two top golfers in the Australian Masters Golf Championship. Both players took two shots to land on the green. The first player opted to play a safe shot that missed the hole by centimetres. He tapped the ball in for an easy par.

The second player knew a successful putt would secure the championship. Two putts would mean playing another hole. He missed. Nevertheless, he could salvage the situation if he holed his next shot. However, his first attempt had overshot the hole by a couple of metres and he was unable to sink his next putt.

The winner, when interviewed, said he was attempting to get the ball in with one putt, but also played it safe because he thought his opponent might three-putt. What an amazing statement! Here are professional golfers who practice putting for hours a day and he thought his opponent might three-putt, which he did. What he was really saying was, “I thought he might succumb to the pressure.”

Often when we find ourselves in spiritual warfare all we need to do is stand firm (verse 27, see also Ephesians 6:11)). We don’t need to worry about hitting winning shots or trying to look good in the eyes of the world. If we stand firm in the belief that God is in control, without being frightened in any way by those who oppose us, then our enemy, the devil, will have to flee with his plans in tatters (James 4:7).