The London 2012 Summer Olympics begin today! I am excited to watch the opening ceremonies and wonder how it will compare to those of Beijing. Somehow, I don’t think the Brits will be outdone, nor will they have the embarrassment of having an attractive person lip-sync a song for the opening because the person whose voice is being used isn’t quite attractive enough. …just sayin’!
I hope, I pray these Olympics have no similarity to those of the 1972 Olympics in Munich, Germany. I remember sitting and watching with Baby Girl in my lap. She was but a toddler and I remember the feeling of helplessness and fear as to what this world held in store for my child or any child of that era.
The years have passed and we have seen many more horrific acts of terrorism in our world. May we never become unfeeling or unemotional when we see human life being terrorized to its core.
I have come to believe that being a Christian is a lot like being an athlete. Athletes go through grilling practices for whatever their specialty is. Then, they compete against others who are performing the very same specialty. Sometimes they win and sometimes they don't. The key is to finish the race; to finish the course, the event.
That reminds me of an Olympic event a number of years ago. His name was Derrick Redman. He was a runner for Great Britain in the 1992 Olympics in Barcelona, Spain. He tried to make it in the 1988 summer Olympics but he was injured and he had to make a decision, “Do I go through all the work for four more years to get to the 92 Olympics?” He made a decision to run again to honor his father who had supported him all of his life.
Derek qualified for the 1992 Olympics which was an amazing feat since he had undergone twenty-two surgeries on his Achilles’ tendon. He qualified to be in the semi finals of the men’s 440 meter race. He was in one of the center lanes, the gun fired and he shot out of the blocks leading the pack. 140 meters down the track he was in a strong position when his hamstring gave way. He collapsed to the ground in a ball of pain and tears. Medics ran out to assist him but Redman waved them away. He was determined to finish the race, even if he couldn’t win it. And so he crawled and hobbled his way along the track.
There was a commotion in the crowd and a man ran down from the grandstands. He pushed his way through the security guards and ran on to the track towards his son. It was Jim Redman, Derrick’s father. He placed an arm around Derek. “You don’t have to do this” Jim told his son. “Yes I do” Derek replied. “Well then” said Jim, “we’re going to finish this together”. Just before they reached the finish line, with the crowd screaming in support, Jim Redmond let his son go, so that he could cross the line on his own.
After the race Derrick Redman was interviewed and he said “My father was the only person who could have helped me, because he understood everything that I had been through.” I so remember watching this event and I'm still moved to tears when I think about it or read a reference to it. I believe this act on the part of the Redman Father and Son is an encouragement for us to finish the race, or the event.
Tomorrow I head home to the land of AZ! This will be an all day event of approximately 7 hours and 20 minutes give or take with weather conditions.
Yesterday was filled with storms and warnings and potential flooding. I loved being in the rain and listening to the thunder. Storms are like cocooning for me and I find something so comforting that calls and speaks to my heart. Perhaps there is a little tempest in my Spirit? Whenever we were out, my Baby Girl ran through the rain to escape it. Living in the desert as I do, I raised my hands in Praise and slowly walked to our destination relishing the blessed moisture.
P.S. I have seen something else under the sun:
The race is not to the swift
or the battle to the strong,
nor does food come to the wise
or wealth to the brilliant
or favor to the learned;
but time and chance happen to them all.
Ecclesiastes 9:11 (NIV)