I see it every year in our first year players, the fear of being hit. For our junior high players it is literally the fear of contact for the first time. For our freshman in high school, it is the fear of being hit by someone who is often times much bigger and physically more mature. In both scenarios the player's fear is real and not unfounded. This is one of the elements of tackle football which provides young men with a great life changing opportunity. The opportunity to face fear and overcome it.
Life gives us many opportunities to face difficult and fearful situations. We might lose our employment, face a devastating disease or the loss of someone we love. The list of situations which can bring us to the brink of being fearful is almost limitless. Regardless, those who can confront the fear, apprehension and anxiety and overcome it are the individuals who will lead a more fruitful life. The bible calls upon us to trust in God when we face our fears. In Isaiah 43:1 it is written “Don’t fear, for I have redeemed you; I have called you by name; you are Mine.” God has your back he will be there for those who have faith.
The phrase “fear not” is used at least 80 times in the Bible, most likely because God knows the enemy uses fear to decrease our hope and limit our victories. Paul writes, “And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.” Romans 8:28. Paul is telling us to understand God is on our side and through our faith and trust in him he will see that we reach higher ground. Many times we are not privy to the path but by trusting in Him we allow for God to work in our lives.
In the same manner as God works in our lives to calm the fears a coach works to walk a player through the fear of being hit. As coaches, we have our younger players hit each other while falling on dummies so as to cushion the fall. After a few practices they are not afraid of the contact and when the cushions are removed the ground does not feel as hard. We also ease players into tackling through pitting like players against one another. This does not necessarily mean the same size and strength. I have many times had a smaller, unafraid player, take on a much larger player in a tackling drill so as to exhibit to his peers that size does not matter.
Likewise, God will be there to insure we are provided the techniques and the padding needed to overcome our own trepidation. Have faith and continue to call upon the Lord when faced with fears so as to find the guidance you need to overcome and circumvent the havoc the fear is seeking to sew in your life.