Friday, February 19, 2010

Not a Team Sport

I want to state that I am by no means a judge of skating. I am offering my opinion and that is all.

Last night, as I watched the Free Skate Program of the Men's Figure Skating, I was struck by several things. First, the three men who where less than one point away from each other, going for the medals we so very different. There was the Russian, Yevgeny Plushenko. This man is full of confidence, seems to thrive on the media and attention, and is very vocal about his opponents. He is quick to criticize and play mind games. Then there was the American, Evan Lysacek, who appeared as a quiet, seemingly humble man, who goes about his business of figure skating without all the flair and hype. Though these two men are very different in personality and talent, their goal was the same. Win the gold medal.

Evan came out, beautifully skated his long program. He jumped, spun, virtually floated across the ice. He was not totally flawless though. He almost lost it on a simple spin. He did what was asked of him and more. He left his heart out on the ice.

Yevgeny, was the last skater of the evening. His program started out with a huge quadruple jump. That is four rotations in the air! It is simply a huge feat for a human. He landed it without problem. But as I watched his long program, he seemed to be more flailing his arms, not having the flow of the turns and just jumping around. It just didn't feel sincere to me. He seems more of show-boat, which I suppose is a terrific quality for the Olympics (look at Shaun White).

These two men looked at the same program and the same tricks the had to do, with different styles. I enjoyed both programs and both men. It is just another way to prove that God makes humans so unique, so totally different. Most of us has two arms, two legs, one body and so on, but we all have different features that make us individuals. Figure skating , men's and women's , is not a team sport. All the participants are on a country team of some sort, but each person participating in that event has the same goal; to win.

I am mesmerized by these games and the abilities. The crazy people like, Simon Aamann, the ski jumper from Sweden. I love to watch the men fly down the hill on skis, and at the end of the huge ramp, jump off and fly through the air like Superman. I love the air that Shaun White and Louie Vito gets on the half-pipe.

Being different has it's rewards. We as Christians need to remember that. We can't be like the world. We need to emulate God. We need to do what he wants us to do. Usually that alone sets up apart. Look at Billy Graham, Martin Luther, and Jim Elliott. They did what God wanted them to do and they are known for their lives. Can we do the same? Can we be willing to do a quad jump for Christ?

Psalm 139:13
For you created my inmost being; you knit me together in my mother's womb.

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