Weekend Walk, 08/04/2012: Under the Olympic Lens

I know many of you probably complained about Olympics spoilers this year.  You already know by early afternoon who won the gold medal, but the official television coverage doesn’t begin until after dinner.  It’s pretty hard to be surprised by the results and maybe you hate that.

Not me.  I purposely look up the competitions to find out who won before I dare sit down to watch the actual sport.  It helps me mentally and emotionally prepare to relax and enjoy or fret and face disappointment.

Thus, I knew in advance for the women’s team gymnastics competition who would win.  And I knew which of the girls bounced on their landings or wobbled on the balance beam.

With all of that tension and stress out of the way, I started to enjoy the show, until I noticed the cameramen.

After flipping and twisting and flying into the air, every gymnastics competitor hopped down off the mats and hugged each of her teammates and her coach, trying to act reasonably normal despite the fact that massive cameras with lenses the size of my head were no more than a foot or two from her face.

The photographers were so intrusive.  None of the girls had even one second post-competition to themselves to recover or hide or be herself.

When she’s smiling and high-fiving after a job well done, that’s not so bad.

But when you’ve made a massive mistake that could cost you and your team the medal you’ve trained for most of your life, well, that’s horrifying to me.  Instead of cheering on the gymnasts, I found myself mentally screaming at the cameramen.

“Go away.  Give her some space, will ya?  Good grief, she’s a 16-year-old child who just needs a few minutes to get over a huge life disappointment.  Would it hurt you to take pictures somewhere else for a while and give her some privacy?”

Then the commentators would drone on and on about what she did wrong, how she angled this incorrectly or spun too far or fell off balance here.  They had diagrams and replays and slow-motion analysis.

People have a way of never forgetting our mistakes or perpetually defining us by our errors.

Yet, God always offers forgiveness to a truly repentant heart.

It’s beyond our understanding, then, that our omniscient God, who knows every darkest secret of our mind and heart, can push our mistakes and sins out of His memory.  This week, I’m meditating on passage all about this absolutely amazing grace:

The Lord is compassionate and gracious,
    slow to anger, abounding in love.
He will not always accuse,
    nor will he harbor his anger forever;
 he does not treat us as our sins deserve
    or repay us according to our iniquities.
For as high as the heavens are above the earth,
    so great is his love for those who fear him;
as far as the east is from the west,
    so far has he removed our transgressions from us.
(Psalm 103:8-12).

Heather King is a wife, mom, Bible Study teacher, writer for www.myfrienddebbie.com and worship leader.  Most importantly, she is a Christ follower with a desire to help others apply the Bible to everyday life with all its mess, noise, and busyness.  To read more devotionals by Heather King, click here.

Weekend Walk, 07/28/2012: Olympic Dreams

Hiding the Word:

Last night I watched the opening ceremonies for the Olympics for the first time in my life.

Yes, I did say, “in my life.”


We let our daughters stay up a little later than normal and watched the London extravaganza as a family, which meant I watched for two minutes and then explained for a few seconds what was happening on the TV screen.

We didn’t need network commentators.  We had our own running commentary/question and answer time right in our living room.

When I first mentioned the Olympics to my older daughter she declared without a second’s pause, “I want to be in the Olympics!” as if it’s little more than signing up for a relay race at a Fourth of July picnic.  I tried explaining repeatedly that these are the best athletes in the world, but I still don’t think she fully understands.

So we had the same conversation we had when she announced that the girl who got many lead roles in community theater productions was “lucky.”

Yes, there’s talent, but not really luck.  Mostly there’s hard work, discipline, training, starting small and reaching goals and then setting new goals.  It involves daily sacrifices of what you’d rather be doing, what everyone else is doing, what is more fun and seems temporarily more satisfying.

Sometimes we similarly assume that someone with a deeper relationship with God is “lucky.”  She’s not as busy as we are.  She doesn’t like TV as much or is more of a reader naturally so Bible study isn’t such hard work.  Her life isn’t as crazy and stressful.

It’s a myth.

Wherever you have depth of Bible study and prayer and intimacy with God, you have discipline and sacrifice, yes daily sacrifice for the sake of what matters eternally.

Here’s a Scripture verse to meditate on all this week, reminding us that while physical feats of strength and skill at the Olympics are laudable, we are all told to train for godliness.

Have nothing to do with irreverent, silly myths. Rather train yourself for godliness; for while bodily training is of some value, godliness is of value in every way, as it holds promise for the present life and also for the life to come”
(1 Timothy 4:7-8)

Heather King is a wife, mom, Bible Study teacher, writer for www.myfrienddebbie.com and worship leader. Most importantly, she is a Christ follower with a desire to help others apply the Bible to everyday life with all its mess, noise, and busyness. To read more devotionals by Heather King, click here.

Copyright © 2012 Heather King