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Photo: Enigma-Sports

"God made me for a purpose, but he also made me fast and when I run, I feel his pleasure."

Eric Liddell in Chariots of Fire

God’s presence

Be strong…I am with you Haggai 2:4

When the new temple was being built, God gave the prophet Haggai a message of encouragement for the Governor and the High Priest. The message was an assurance of God’s presence. The prophet’s message is: ‘“I am with you” declares the Lord Almighty. “This is what I covenanted with you when you came out of Egypt. And my spirit remains among you. Do not fear”’. Because of God’s presence with him it was easier for the Governor and the High Priest to be strong.

Fear is a very common human emotion. We are afraid of the unknown. We are afraid of failure, of disappointment, of change. As athletes we fear that we cannot achieve what we know we are capable of. An athlete said to me recently immediately after a race: “It is very disappointing because I know I can do better than that”. That is the reality of sport – we cannot always perform to our best.

Sometimes even good things can bring pressure. It is great when your family can come to watch you compete but then if you don’t perform you feel you have let them down as well as yourself, you coach, your team.

The best way through the challenge is to remember that God is with you. He has promised you his presence. Knowing that God is with you can help you to be strong and not to fear.

I have on my desk a little card that my daughter gave me. It says: “God said it. I believe it. That settles it!”

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