Running the Race Well: Olympics inspire us to stewardship


Every four years Americans gather around their televisions to watch the results unfold from exciting head-to-head battle between the top competitors in their fields.  And no, we’re not talking about the November elections.

We are, of course, referring to the 2012 Olympic Games currently underway in London.  Unlike any other event on the national or international stage, the Olympics unify us behind the sports stars who rise to the challenge and inspire us with their captivating stories of dedication, struggle, perseverance and accomplishment.  As Americans, our patriotism is renewed as we focus on the Olympic motto “Citius, Altius, Fortius” – Faster, Higher, Stronger.

For Faith Driven Consumers, perhaps one of the most gratifying aspects of the Olympics is seeing committed Christian athletes use the platform they’ve been given to share their faith.  They remind us that we all have a sphere of influence in our lives and a platform from which to share our faith and values.

For some athletes, their relationship with Christ gives them a quiet confidence and sense of worth outside their sport.  Jacob Wukie, a member of the U.S. archery team spoke before the games about how his worldview helps him compete.  In another interview, Wukie explained what it means to use his God-given talents:

“He is in control and has a plan for my life, I am able to give my best and let the rest lie in His hands.  He has given me the talents and abilities that I possess; He has taught me to love those around me and what it means to push hard.”

For swimmer Charlie Houchin, a faith-driven life gives him confidence every time he gets into the water.

“…I think understanding your relationship with Christ keeps everything on an even keel and gives perspective about what’s important,” Houchin said.

As part of the 4×200 meter freestyle relay team, Houchin received a gold medal.  Wukie helped the United States archery team capture a silver medal, including a semifinal upset over the top-ranked team in the world.

In the Bible, Paul uses the imagery of an athlete running a race in order to win the prize.  Like the example many Olympic athletes set with their training and performance, Faith Driven Consumers can diligently choose to steward the resources to which they’ve been entrusted by God honor and glorify Him in all that they say and do – including daily spending decisions. When, where and how we spend our money matters – as does which companies we choose to support with our business.

Every choice matters and every choice has a consequence.   Why not proactively support businesses that choose to build the kingdom of God through their actions?  God has given great blessings to His people and it’s important to steward them toward those places where His heart is.

Running the good race isn’t just for Olympians. Nor is it limited to the sphere of sports.  Let’s allow the joy and inspiration of the 2012 London Olympics to spur us on to better stewardship in the time, talent and treasure to which we’ve been entrusted as Faith Driven Consumers.

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