It was the Barcelona 1992 Olympics, Derek Redmond kicked off his 400m race with a fantastic start. Approximately midway through his run, his hamstring snapped, paralysing him with immense pain. He had every reason to quit. He could barely walk properly, let alone run.
But he chose to keep going, one step at a time.
Derek may not have won that race but he demonstrated to the whole world the importance of finishing well. In spite of his injury, he was determined to finish his Olympic race. During the last few meters, his father joined him. He helped pick him up and assisted him in finishing the race despite officials trying to tell him to step away. He was there for his son.
Most people won’t actually remember the name of the winner in the ‘92 400m race. But they will remember Derek Redmond and his dad. The video of the beautiful moment has over 2,000,000 views and touched millions of hearts.
Many people struggle with finishing strong. In fact, sometimes it’s easier to start something than to finish it. This is a common occurrence. For example, when you have to write an essay and you start off really well but then you begin to lose steam. It’s as if the finish line is just too far from your reach – you can’t seem to see the light at the end of the tunnel. The struggle is real.
You’re going to be hit with adversity and problems along the way. It’s easy to keep focused and to keep pushing forward when everything is going well. But when it’s not? That will determine your will and discipline because quitting and giving up is the easy option.
Finishing strong isn’t only important in sport, but also in life. These traits may be a determining factor between success and failure.
Adversity is inevitable. There’s no question about whether or not adversity will strike but what’s important is how you respond when it does strike. It’s easy to give up in times of trial, but finishing well will help train you to keep moving forward. The more you practice and choose to persevere, the more you can begin to train yourself to keep moving forward despite the challenges you face.
When you lose sight of the finish line, it’s easy to take a detour or a shortcut. When you’re consumed with emotions like fear, worry or doubt you can be tempted to drift off the path. But when you maintain focus on your vision and persevere to finish strong, you can keep your feet steady towards the finish line.
When you are dedicated to excellent work by being consistent and giving your “all”, this can create a reputation of being reliable, faithful and trustworthy. These are traits that most employers, employees, or teachers look for. More than that, finishing strong is important in your family life – it’s something a wife may admire in her husband and children in their father.
The best thing about finishing strong is that you don’t have to do it alone. God is always right beside you, cheering you on to finish your excellent work. Derek’s dad was there for him when he fell and even helped him to get back up.
When trials come, God is right there to pick you back up when you fall. He’s there for you to talk to, to cry to and to help you move forward. He will never leave you nor forsake you. (Deuteronomy 31:6)
When you decide to do something – commit to it fully, set your mind, heart and soul to it and finish well. No one can make you choose to finish strong. It’s totally, completely and utterly up to you.
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