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Olympian Lolo Jones: ‘God is the Author of Love, God is the Ultimate Defender’

Photo from Lolo Jones’ Instagram

Olympian Lolo Jones: ‘God is the Author of Love, God is the Ultimate Defender’

By Movieguide® Staff

USA Olympic runner Lolo Jones is no stranger to success. But it was in one of her moments of failure that she heard God speak into her life.

Jones, a three-time Olympian, entered as the favorite to win gold in the 100-meter hurdle final in the 2008 Beijing Olympic games.

However, Jones failed to clear the second to last hurdle and fell from the front of the race to seventh place.

In her moment of defeat, Jones revealed that God told her: “But you’re here.”

“At that moment, God reminded me, ‘This will try to break you, but you’re still here, you’re still standing,'” Jones told the Christian Post. “That completely shifted my perspective. Losing an Olympic gold medal is the worst thing that could happen to an Olympic athlete, but those words gave me an instant change in my attitude to one of gratitude. Even in the storm, even in the battles, God reminds me of His faithfulness and provision.”

Jones said that her heart of gratitude inspired her to keep training and even compete on the U.S. bobsled team.

Listen: Movieguide® Staff discuss Nightbirde, the Olympics and more in their new podcast! 

 

In February, Jones took home gold at the World Championship bobsled competition in Germany.

“The 38-year-old added to her trophy case on Saturday by winning her first world championship in an Olympic program bobsled event after placing first in the two-woman race in Altenberg, Germany alongside Kaillie Humphries. The pair won after two runs of 56.40 seconds and 56.54 (1:52.94) while Germany took second place at 1:53.28,” Sports Illustrated reported.

For Jones, her identity in Christ means more to her than winning or losing.

“I have to think, ‘OK, what happens if I end my career and I’m never an Olympic medalist? Am I going to be bitter at God because of that, or am I just going to praise Him and thank Him for the opportunities and blessings I’ve had along the way?” she said. “That mentality applies to life, because what if your dreams in life don’t work out? What if you don’t get the things you’ve prayed about? You can choose gratitude or you can choose to be bitter and angry. Regardless of whether I win or lose, God is going to receive praise from my mouth, no matter if I get the desires of my heart or if I don’t.”

Jones recently published a book called Over It: How to Face Life’s Hurdles With Grit, Hustle, and Grace where she expands on how God has been faithful in every area of her life.

Life’s hurdles started at an early age for Jones, who grew up surrounded by alcoholism and abuse.

“There were some really harsh moments,” Jones said. “My dad was in prison for multiple crimes.”

Despite her circumstances, Jones said that she could look on the past with forgiveness and towards the future with optimism through her faith.

“My faith allows me to forgive,” she said. “I can reflect on my relationship with my dad and harbor anger and resentment. But then, I’d still be broken. After everything happened, not only did I forgive my dad and my mom, but there were layers of healing throughout my family. They completely changed.”

“Now, I can look back on the amazing moments I had with my dad, and I can remember him as a kind, gentle person. After he came out of prison, he was a changed man. He never put his hands on my mother again. He was a man of faith and even took me to church,” she continued, adding that no one is beyond God’s reach. “It reflects the power of a relationship with Christ. It’s not just my forgiveness; it’s our understanding that God forgives us too.”

In her book, Jones encouraged other believers to remain steadfast in their faith despite the growing cancel culture in today’s society.

“It can be exhausting because cancel culture says that even speaking up for your faith is ‘hate speech,'” she said. “How can Christianity and sharing God’s love be deemed as hate? God is the author of love. I feel for the younger generation because it is so countercultural to talk about your faith today.”

“God’s the ultimate defender,” she added. “Pray that He will give you the words to share at the right time. There have been so many moments where God has placed people in my life when they were desperately hurting and just needed some encouragement. If you let Him, God will give you the words.

“I hope that my book gives hope to someone who has lost it, someone who feels exhausted and drained, someone who feels like they’ve done everything in their power to achieve their dreams and they just keep falling flat on their face,” she continued. “I want to give a boost of energy to someone out there who is hurting to just try again and to have hope, regardless of what they’re facing.”