I love the Olympics. I stay up way too late, way too many nights in a row, just to watch! While not very good at sports myself, I love to watch them – all kinds – and the Olympics feeds this love by allowing me to watch many sports I never get to watch! Beach volleyball, water polo, men’s gymnastics, diving and so much more. And then there are the ones I get to watch and love – women’s gymnastics, tennis, soccer, swimming. You get the idea!
As much as I love watching the actual events, I also love hearing the stories. Because, let’s face it, those athletes didn’t just show up in Rio ready made to win Olympic gold. Refugees who had to flee home, living in camps…still make it to the Olympics defying all the odds. Athletes who’ve lost limbs, were born with cerebral palsy or other diseases…do amazing things in wheelchair and with prosthetic limbs. Even your “normal” Olympic athletes have tales of moving across country or to another country, countless hours of practice, overcoming hurdles just to be able to make it on the Olympic team.
Real people with real passions that make a difference in their lives. That’s what I love the most.
And that’s where the Olympics cross over into my “normal-non-athletic-winning” life. Because even though I will never make an Olympic team, I am on a team of eternal significance. And as I watch and listen, I think to myself – do I live my life with as much passion? As much dedication? What might my life look like if I did? How might it change?
Too often our spiritual race is run haphazardly, but we want the results of a passionately dedicated follower of Jesus. So what needs to change? Are we willing? These questions and more are the ones we will look at over the next few weeks as we view our spiritual journey as a race worth running passionately with dedication and perseverance.
Olympians don’t just show up in Olympic form. Followers of Jesus don’t just show up being great at running the spiritual race of life either. Join the team in the coming weeks, for training tips, inspiring stories and maybe even a little inspiration from our heavenly coach as well! Come join us and let “going for the gold” be about more than a medal around your neck! – Pastor Jane Jebsen