Motivational speaker and author Zig Ziglar passed away on November 28, 2012, at the age of 86. We pay tribute to his inspirational life and career by sharing this story he wrote for Guideposts in 1978.
I love to play golf. Nothing makes me happier than just rarin’ back and bustin’ that ball as hard as I can from the tee. Then, if I can find it, I like to bust it again.
Well, not long ago I bought a set of clubs for my 12-year-old son Tom. He was a bit hesitant at first, but then the golf bug bit him and he suddenly started to play—and pretty well for a beginner.
Our golf club has three courses, two for regular golfers, one for old folks and beginners. We were playing the easy course.
On one of the par fours, Tom hit a beautiful wood shot right down the middle, then took his five iron and put the ball right on the green about 40 feet from the pin. That meant he had a chance for a birdie.
To you non-golfers, that simply means that if he could sink this long putt he would score one stroke under par for the hole. I showed him how to line it up, and the ball went straight as a string—boom!—right into the cup!
I tell you, the expression on Tom’s face was the most beautiful thing I’d ever seen. I grabbed him and hugged him and we did a war dance for about two minutes.
Then I realized I had a problem. I was also on the green in two, about 12 feet from the cup. I was afraid that if I missed that putt, Tom would figure I had missed it on purpose so that he could win—a cheap victory worth nothing. So I stroked it firmly, and in it went.
I think you know what it would have meant to my boy if I had honestly missed that putt. He would have won a hole from his dad, something he’d never done, something he dearly wanted to do. But he just smiled and said quietly, “Great putt, Dad. I was pulling for you all the way.”
Now in my book, that’s love. Pure love. That’s what we need more of in every city, town and village in America.
I truly believe that regardless of who you are, you can get everything you want in life if you help enough other people get what they want.
When teachers pull for students, managers pull for employees, parents pull for children, husbands and wives pull for each other, then that helps each person realize his worth even more. It helps them to do better.
This also applies to our relationship with God. When we remember that Jesus is “pulling” for us, it’s the most comforting thing in the world.