Olympians 4: Relay Team: Rack, Shack, Benny and Shazz

17 year old high school student from Aurora, Colorado wins big with a heavy heart. Missy Franklin won her first gold medal today and set a new American record.

"Right now, all of my races are dedicated back home to Colorado,"
12 people dead, 58 people injured.
The shooting shocked a desensitized nation bent on pleasure and struck chords of terror in the heart of many parents.
"No matter how well I do, I'm going to give my best in every single race, and every single race, I'm going to have that Colorado incident on my mind."
She got on a plane, knowing that her life is a gift that must honor those whose story has ended and even with the pain still fresh, she did just that.
As blood ran down the streets, Shadrach paused to get one last look at the burning stump which represented all that was left of the tree he climbed countless times as a boy.
Meshach mumbles a prayer for sanity, and thanks God that his mother's death came before his younger sister's repeated violation by the Babylonian troops.
Hands tied behind their back, with their feet shackled, united in misery and in bondage. their minds forever seared with the images they left behind, they wonder what the future would hold.
By the river of Babylon, Abednego bends to slake his thirst and silently washes his tear stained face as he remembers Mount Zion and his father's butchered corpse at its foothills.
Belteshazzar looks ahead, scared that if he glances his faith would fail and his body would crumble beneath the burning heat. He recalls the ranshacked temples walls, the bodies in the street and asks, "Father why am I still standing"

Stripped of their names, dignity and pride, wealth and position, family and culture, ridiculed and possibly castrated.
Medal 1: But Daniel purposed in his heart that he would not defile himself with the portion of the king’s delicacies. Daniel 1:8


Familial problems have a way of making us docile. They strike at our core and so we retreat to lick our wounds and pray for delieverance, sometimes abandoning the call Christ has placed in our hearts for lost souls. I've tried in the past to fix my family, but I'm beginning to realize that I can't solve all their problems. I've resented God at times because He has allowed things to happen, and point blank told him "When you fix my family, I will go preach to the needy." So if you are like me, the next time you feel overwhelmed by the dangers close to home, pray and remember that ...

An olympian is one who uses each breath to make a difference
An olympian is one who doesn't use their family situation as a crutch
An olympian is one who despite the setbacks and degradation, still presses on
An olympian is one who trusts God to take care of their families when all else fails
Rack, Shack, Benny and Shazz are Olympians

Medal 2: .... will be discussed when the track relays start (Jamaica!!!)

Olympian 3: Nameless Boy

Majorie Gestring was 13 years old and 268 days when she won the Olympic gold medal in competitive springboard diving.  This event happened in 1936. The new age limit for Olympic atheletes is 14 so this record will never be broken again. During the final competition she went head to head with 21 year old Dorothy Poynton-Hill and 18 year old Katherine Louise Rawls and won. Despite this being her first international competition she steped onto the diving board and lept off with all her might and won.

Rewind a couple thousand years. Sitting on a portruding rock, tired from walking all morning to hear the Rabbi speak, he cranes his neck to the left to catch a glimpse of the great man and the rumble in his belly reminds him of the sack his mother had packed the night before. It was supposed to be his breakfast but he was in such a hurry to get here that he still hadn't eaten it. As he opens his breakfast-turned-dinner he hears others around him grumble about being hungry and says a silent prayer. He opens his mouth to take a bite of the fried fish when he feels a tap on his shoulder. It's Andrew, one of the Rabbi's disciples and initially he is scared, wondering if he is sitting on a special rock but then Andrew says "We need your food" and he just stares. Andrew realizing the boy doesn't understand says to him gently this time "The master wants your food". As he remembered the walk up to the mountain, and the words he had heard, he knew deep in his heart that even if he had to go to bed hungry, he would do whatever he could to help the Master. And so he lifts his bag to Andrew and says "Take it and use it"

Okay so maybe I'm stretching John 6:9 a lil' bit.
But here is my question.
Was the nameless kid the ONLY person out of 5000 who had brought a packed lunch?

This boy reminds us that God will use the little we have as long as we surrender it to him so the next time you feel too young or inexperienced remember that ...

An Olympian is one who doesn't let their age restrain them
An Olympian is one who realizes that little is much when God is in it
Nameless kid with lunch sack is an olympian

Olympian 2: Noah

Ian Millar, aka Captain Canada, will set a new record in London, by competing in his 10th Olympic Games. He has competed in every game since 1972, except for the 1980 games in Russia which was boycotted by Canada.


Over 70 % of this year Olympic hopefuls were not even an embroyo when he started competing.
So one would wonder, that with that many games behind him, he should have plethora of medals, right?
The only medal Ian has, he obtained at the Beijing Games in 2008, which means that he kept on going, kept on competing, kept on losing and still stayed in the game.

God was disgusted with humanity and realized that in order to save them, he needed to clean the earth of their evil stench, down to the birds and bees.

But Noah found grace in the eyes of the Lord. Gen 6:8

Noah found grace and spent the next 120 years preaching and building an ark.

Question, does that really sound like grace?

It is easy in hindsight to look at the people in the ark as the blessed ones but for the 120 years leading up to the flood, they were despised. Noah was ridiculed, boycotted, because he kept on going, kept on building, even though it appeared he was wasting his time.

Do you ever feel like the time you have spent is wasted.
God called you and gave you a mission, and some days it might feel like you are stuck in neutral while other speed on by, accumulating medals and results, degrees and houses, cars and positions an Don't give up 'cuz ...

An olympian is not one that gives up because life gets hard.
An olympian is not one that allows loss to change their course.
An olympian is not one that allows ridicule to dampen their spirit.
An olympian does not reach for the certain but aspires for that which is uncertain.

Noah is an olympian.

Olympians of the Faith Series

I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, and I have remained faithful. 
2 Tim 4:7

Are you in a fight?
Are you running the race?
Will you be found faithful?

16 days of the London Olympics
so let's look at 16 Biblical Olympians who have come before us.

Day 2: ... find out tomorrow.

Happy Olympics y'all!

Olympian I: Caleb

Oscar Swahn, was 72 years and 280 days old when he won his sixth Olympic medal at Antwerp Games in 1920.
72 years old.
I don't about you, but the closer I get to 30 the less excited I get about physical activity. I exercise because I HAVE to not because I have this yearning to climb a mountain or compete in a physically tasking sport. Hiroshi is a Japanese equestrian rider who earlier this year at the age of 70 qualified for the 2012 London Games. What would possess a man that old to embark on such an ardous task?

85 years old.
And now, behold, the Lord has kept me alive, as He said, these forty-five years, ever since the Lord spoke this word to Moses while Israel wandered in the wilderness; and now, here I am this day, eighty-five years old. Joshua 14:10

Caleb was 85 years old when the Isrealites reached the promised land. He wandered in the wilderness not because of his lack of faith but because of those around him. On reaching the promise land he approached an unconquered mountain inhabited by giants and told Joshua


I don't get this. On reaching the promise land, Caleb doesn't ask for the lush valley that has recently been conquered. He reminds Joshua of that day 45 years ago and says I want a chance to claim what God promised mii.
The story gets better because a little later he says "it may be that the Lord will be with me"
There was no dream or vision that he would conquer the inhabitants of the mountain.

No guarantee. But still, he wanted THE CHANCE to ATTEMPT at that which made others quake in their boots.

An olympian is not one that gives up on a dream.
An olympian is not one that cowers in front of an obstacle. 
An olympian is not one that allows the passage of time to dictate their abilities.
An olympian does not reach for the certain but aspires for that which is uncertain.
Caleb is an olympian. 

The older you get, the more you will hear people tell you to give up or let go of a dream. The rationale is always that you are too old but remember, with God ALL things are possible.

Check out my 2010 post on Caleb's name, mission and destiny.