The above clip shows one of the most famous events of the 1992 Olympics. Derek Redmond was competing in the 400-metre semi-final race when he tore his hamstring. Derek would have put in years of training to take part in this momentous sporting event, but his dreams came crashing down in that one moment. Still determined to finish the race, he got up off the floor, pushed through the pain of his injury and got a standing ovation from the crowd as he crossed the finishing line. What was even more special was that Derek’s father defied security and ran onto the race-track to help his son to finish. It was a poignant scene not only because it showed a young man’s determination, but also because it reflected the love and support of a father.
This is what God does daily in our lives – He carries us through. Life brings us burdens every day which we can get weighed down by, but we aren’t alone in what we face: “Blessed be the Lord, who daily bears us up; God is our salvation” (Psalm 68:19). God is at always our side supporting us, loving us and strengthening us to bear our burdens.
I’ve not always appreciated His presence when He’s picked me up from one fall or another, but He’s always been there. I look back at the race-track of my life so far and I thank Him for carrying me through, for dusting me off when I’ve fallen, for lifting my chin up and bringing me redemption from my shame.
Instead of feeling dejected by our circumstances, choices or what life throws at us, we can take inspiration from the athlete Derek Redmond. Through our pain and broken dreams, we can choose to get back up and carry on because our Heavenly Father is beside us.
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“Even to your old age and gray hairs I am he, I am he who will sustain you. I have made you and I will carry you; I will sustain you and I will rescue you” (Isaiah 46:4).