Today I'm joining the Five Minute Friday community again, writing for five minutes on a given prompt. This week's word is INSPIRE.
I was trying to think recently of what we had last summer that is missing this summer, and then it came to me ....
No, I don't mean heat, although that's true, too. I mean the Olympics.
When we were on vacation out east last summer, we stayed at my aunt's house and spent a lot of our time in the evening watching the Olympics. Sports competition can be so inspiring. Athletes give everything they have to be the best in their sport. They train, they practice, they sacrifice -- just for that chance to be on the podium.
One of my favourite movies of all time is Chariots of Fire. (SPOILER ALERT if you haven't seen it -- though it is 36 years old.)
It's set in the 1924 Paris Olympics and tells the parallel stories of two British runners: Harold Abrahams and Eric Liddell.
Abrahams is Jewish and is driven to prove himself in a society where he feels looked-down upon.
Liddell is a Christian who postpones missionary work in China so that he can compete in Paris -- only to find out that his heat is on a Sunday. When he refuses to participate, a teammate who has already won a medal gives up his spot in a different race so that Liddell can run. Liddell wins his race, and Abrahams wins his.
There are so many inspiring moments in this film: it contains all the courage, strength, sacrifice, and determination that the Olympics have come to symbolize.
But I especially love Liddell's words to his sister, who is worried that he is focused more on running than on mission work:
"I believe that God made me for a purpose -- for China. But He also made me fast -- and when I run, I feel His pleasure."
If you've never seen this movie, I'd highly recommend it. One of the best parts is the iconic opening scene showing the British team running on the beach. Click on the video below to watch it.