U.S. Olympic Runner Sydney McLaughlin Credits God After Setting World Record: ‘I Owe It All To God’

The Tokyo Olympics is witnessing a surge of medals being won for the United States as our hardworking and talented athletes are bringing home the gold.

sydney McLaughlin faith
Sydney McLaughlin

Now U.S. Olympian Sydney McLaughlin put on a stunning performance on Monday in the semi-finals of the women’s 400-meter hurdles, which put her in the finals at the Tokyo Olympics. She won the semi-final by scoring just shy of the Olympic record with a time of 53.03, despite facing rainy conditions.

The conditions were not ideal but despite a false start due to another runner, McLaughlin kept her eyes on the medal and was nearly 10 paces down the track when a second gun went off, signaling the false start. “It’s always an adjustment, just mentally, having to refocus and regroup,” McLaughlin said. “It’s just one of those things. You can’t always control what happens, but mentally you can control how you respond to it.”

Her response to the situation got a lot of attention as did her performance. McLaughlin broke the world record last month during the U.S. Olympic track and field trials with a recorded time of 51.90 seconds, becoming the first woman to run the event in under 52 seconds. The 21-year-old gave all the glory to God.

“I felt immediate excitement and overall gratefulness,” she said. “I owe it all to God, my family, and my team. I’m still in disbelief, but it’s truly just faith, trusting the process, and seeing my hard work along with the gift of God being put into action.”

McLaughlin’s Instagram bio states simply, “Jesus saved me,” and she often posts about her faith in God. She has shared about the good and the bad that come with competitive racing. In a May 16 post on Instagram, she pointed out that her strongest source of support is the Lord.

“Some days, the friendships and support are through the roof. Others, you wouldn’t even know it was there. Especially in a world full of inconsistency, it’s such a breath of fresh air to find true stability in Jesus. As humans, we are constantly shifting our efforts toward one another based on emotions and circumstances,” she wrote.

“The peace of knowing I will always have a friend, always have His support, and always have His LOVE; makes even the loneliest of moments feel full. My soul finds rest in knowing He is not like us. He doesn’t change, and He will never leave me. Giving the ability to be completely content, no matter the situation. Simply because I don’t have to face it alone. That. Is. Love.”

Meanwhile, McLaughlin is going to compete for the gold medal against reigning world champion Dalilah Muhammad. She said that for her it was more important to have a Christ-like attitude than the title of a top athlete.

“I see myself impacting the lives of others by living by example through my actions and kindness,” she said. “Beyond being a great athlete, I want to be known as a good person of strong faith and integrity.” As McLaughlin goes for gold at the Tokyo Olympics we pray for God to help her shine and win the coveted medal for the glory of God.

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