An Olympian, Me?
When the Winter Olympics were held in Vancouver I was teaching classes at a local nursing home, and wrote this devotional for them. It features, Caleb, the Bible person who, although advanced in years, claimed his mountain. I have “dusted it off” a little and modernized it.
This year’s London Olympics has certainly had the shine of two very young American gold medalists. Gymnast, Gabby Douglas is 16, and the swimmer, Katie Ledecky, is 15 years, 4 months old. On the other hand, this apparently is the retiring year for Michael Phelps who is not yet 30. Of course, television and reporters always seem to want to make a big deal about his retirement.
Joshua was a mighty man during his 40-year trek through the wilderness. Moses had allowed the people to choose between the conflicting reports from the spies that he sent into Israel. When most of the people rejected a plan of faith to go ahead and enter the land promised them, God didn’t let those faithless people enter. Finally when that generation died, Moses put Joshua in charge. Caleb had seen the same giants in the land but did not flinch. He stood by Joshua now. Never mind that he is now 85 years old. According to the promise made in Numbers 14, Joshua the military and spiritual leader tells Caleb, “Sure, go ahead. Mt. Hebron is yours.” The land was occupied by Canaanites and gigantic big men—Goliaths.
Caleb was successful in his quest because: 1) He followed God. 2) He was of a mighty spirit. 3) He was faithful. Those are three elemental strengths in order to be an Olympic Christian.
Giants surround me everyday. Giants of prayerlessness, laziness, worry, failure, faithlessness. My age is slowing me down, but my spirit is still mighty. Like Caleb, I challenge you to have a Giant God.
Live in the presence of your Good Shepherd. When you do that, you can be an Olympic Christian who is gathering jewels for the crown in Heaven. A crown you’ll give to Him.