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David Boudia: Olympic Champion and the Power of the Peace of God

            When David Boudia was competing in the men’s ten-meter platform diving event at the 2012 London Olympics, this Carmel High School graduate managed to put aside, at least temporarily, his loyalties and root for someone from archrival Noblesville.  More importantly, after Boudia won the gold medal, I discovered that he is an example of the power of the peace of God.

            The difference between Boudia’s performance in the Beijing Olympics and the London Olympics was dramatic.  What had happened?  Through the testimony of his coach, Adam Soldati, Boudia had become a Christian. 

            Bob Kravitz of the Indianapolis Star wrote, “… to ignore the impact his religion made on him is to miss the point entirely, to fail to understand what makes him who he is.”  Boudia said, “It was all about perspective, knowing God was in control and having that peace that whatever happens, happens. … There was so much chasing after the wrong things, things that never satisfy you, temporary things.  I was just chasing after medals so I could get famous so I could get money.  And it doesn’t satisfy you”   (

            In a strikingly similar fashion, C.S. Lewis commented that he had been frustrated in his writing because of the desire to become famous.  There seems to be a principle here.  The more we seek ends like fame in order to feed our self, the more we become inhibited and shrivel up as a person.  On the other hand, when we seek to serve God and not be concerned about our self, we are freed as a person to use the skills that he has given to us. 

            Of course, the Lord Jesus Christ told us this two millennia ago, if only we would listen.  “Whoever wants to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for my sake will find it” (Matthew 16:25).  Or again, “Unless a grain of wheat falls into the earth and dies, it remains just a single grain; but if it dies, it bears much fruit” (John 12:24). 

            Living for God’s glory and not for personal fame is freeing.  We no longer have to concern ourselves with what others think about us.  This is the way to fulfillment and true success.  We serve God and seek to please him.  The raging beast of the self has been quieted.  We live in the power of the God of peace who makes us complete in everything good so that we may do his will, working in us that which is pleasing in his sight, through Jesus Christ, to whom be glory forever and ever (Hebrews 13:20-21).

2 thoughts on “David Boudia: Olympic Champion and the Power of the Peace of God

  1. Bill, thank you for reminding me of the fundamental and powerful lesson of living for God’s glory. 2 Corinthians 5:9 is a great verse that I need to come back to time and time again: “So whether we are at home or away, we make it our aim to please him.” (ESV) Grace and peace to you.

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