Barangay Ginebra’s backup point guard Robert Labagala was thrust into the spotlight during his team’s exciting clash with league-leader Talk ‘N Text Sunday night (Nov. 11, 2012) at the MOA Arena.
Inserted into the lineup during a timeout for ball handling purposes, the cat-quick Labagala was immediately fouled by Larry Fonacier to stop the clock with 3.9 seconds left to play and the Gin Kings ahead, 104-101.
The former UE Red Warrior admitted he had butterflies in his stomach when he stepped into the foul line. Make at least one of two and the outcome is settled. Miss both and the Tropang Texters could have a window of opening to possibly send the game to overtime with a three.
Labagala missed both.
Labagala said he was surprised to be called into the game at such a tense moment. But he said, missing both free throws because he was coming straight from the bench was not an excuse.
Have you been in Labagala’s shoes before? Like you experienced anxiety? Like having butterflies in your stomach?
We all feel anxious in tense situations and problems. But how do we respond when anxiety tends to sweep over our focus and confidence?
Paul gave Christians during his time a piece of advice in Philippians 4:6-7, “Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds.”
It’s no magic of an advice. But praying before the all-Powerful God enables us to focus on Him and rely on the boundless strength that He alone can provide.