Usain Bolt, also known as “Lightning Bolt”, is a renowned athlete; a very colourful one! He is the first man to hold both the 100 metres, and 200 metres world records since totally automated time measurements became obligatory in 1977. With his teammates, he also set the world record in the 4×100 metres relay. He is the reigning Olympic champion in these three events! What’s more, he is the highest paid athlete ever in track and field events, and he has been described as “the world’s most marketable and greatest athlete ever”.
With this highly impressive record, one would expect Usain Bolt to always begin, finish, and win all races very well. But that’s not how things usually work out for athletes; sometimes they finish and win races well, sometimes they don’t. On the 28th of August 2011, Usain Bolt was disqualified from the 100 metres final, at the World Athletics Championships in Daegu, South Korea, because he jumped the gun. We can therefore infer that he did not begin or finish that race well.
According to the information that went round afterwards, Usain Bolt became very apprehensive for his ability to ever begin races well again. He was so apprehensive, that his coach had to work extra hard on him, so that he could believe in himself once more. His coach advised him not to concentrate on beginning races well alone, but to concentrate on finishing them well too, since both are very essential for winning laurels. Thank God he listened!
Usain Bolt later performed very well at the 2012 London Olympics Games, where he won gold medals in the 100 metres, 200 metres, and 4×100 meters relay races. Then, he went on to win gold medals in the men’s 100 metres, 200 metres, and 4×100 metres relay races at the 2013 Moscow World Athletics Championships, thus becoming the most successful athlete in the 30-year history of the highly rated World Athletics Championships.
The above narrative on Usain Bolt, demonstrates a number of points on beginning, finishing, and winning races. A few of them are:
1. Being a winning athlete with an impressive credential, is not a guarantee that one would always begin, finish, and win all races.
2. A winning athlete is also prone to beginning, and finishing races poorly.
3. Great results await those who listen to wise counsels, make necessary adjustments, push themselves harder, and have faith in their God given talents.
Like Usain Bolt, all Christians are Athletes (Hebrews 12:1-2), and the points enumerated above, are applicable to us as well! Perhaps you have not run your race well in 2014, and as a result, your business is struggling, your finance is in a mess, your salvation is shaky, your ministry is collapsing, or you are not doing fine as a spouse/parent, you are not doing fine as child/student, you are not doing fine as citizen, etc., then I have good news for you; you can still finish very well (Matthew 19:26)!
Friends, I encourage you to rise up today, dust yourself off, wipe away your tears, discard your garment of sadness/self-pity, start believing in your God given talents, re-strategize, seek advice from the right people, and above all, pray to God to help you, and He will (Isaiah 41:10). He will help you finish 2014 very well; and in years to come, He will help you to overcome challenges, conquer new territories, become who He wants you to be, and when your race on earth is over, you will not find it hard to attain Heaven, in Jesus name. Amen.
Jesus is Lord!
Dr Adedayo Stoney Adegbulu.
Dr Stoney is the author of About God! Undeniable Facts & Testimonies