While I was watching the Olympics, I saw a lot of people at the top of their game, vying to be gold medalists. Many of them didn’t get a medal. Does this mean that they aren’t champions? They might feel that they had failed and are not champions, but in reality, the people that get up and keep going are the ones that win a more important race.
As I watched the ice skating competition, specifically the men’s short programs, I cringed when Jeremy Abbott crashed into the wall during his performance. For a second or two I joined thousands of other people who were probably thinking, “He is done, because he must be hurt after that fall.” But lo and behold, as the crowd cheered, he got back up and finished his performance. It was so spectacular to watch him finish without any other flaws.
He is the mark of a true champion. Those who cheered him on are also champions. As a woman with a disability, I’ve climbed many hurdles, but I couldn’t do what I’ve done with out the champions in my life cheering me on. Some of them give me a smile, some of them give me a kick in the pants when I need it, and some of them just help me get rested up until it’s time to get up and go again.
We are all called to be both cheerleaders and champions. We are all made stronger when we cheer each other on toward greatness. Who are you cheering on right now? Or you might actually be cheering someone on and not even know it! I’ve discovered that all of us are strengthened when we give and receive encouragement from each other because that is what we were created to do.
If these rainy, gray winter days, have brought gloom your way, go to the mall and just smile at someone, make a phone call to someone you know, or send a card to a friend for no reason at all, and let me know if your gloom suddenly turns to sunshine!