In the triathlon world, the Ironman World Championship in Kona, Hawaii, is the ultimate achievement. For Katy Rosane, that personal achievement turned into a time to allow God to move in ways she never thought possible in order to influence countless people and show them God’s love.
Katy qualified for Kona in May, and she instantly felt like God would use the race to show out in a unique way. “When I qualified for World Championships again, I really felt like God wanted me to do something to glorify Him.” Not knowing exactly what God had in store, Katy continued to race and train in preparation for the big event; but she encountered a serious trial just a few months before race day: a stress fracture in her foot. “I was down doing the Portland triathlon when it really flared up, but I had no idea it was a stress fracture!”
Because of the stress fracture, Katy was forced to resort to unique—and far less favorable—training methods to stay in shape for Kona. “I was biking with a winter clog and a cage for my broken foot and made up a contraption so I could swim. And I did a lot of aqua jogging!” Just two weeks before the race, Katy received x-rays indicating that the fracture was not displaced, so she was determined to participate regardless of the pain. “Most people would just say ‘your foot is hurt, don’t race,’ but this is Kona, the big one, and I really, really felt that God wanted me here for a reason. I had to try and I wasn’t sure what would happen but I prayed that God would use this for His glory.”
On the day of the race, Katy decided to wear a t-shirt that said “I CAN” on the front and “Philippians 4:13” on the back, and God used something as simple as a piece of clothing to make an impact in the racing community. “So many people read my shirt and saw my condition of having one shoe and one foot cast, and they shouted ‘yes you can’ and ‘nice verse!’ I walked down one section and the whole street went into a roar when they saw me. Then, other racers came along and told me how encouraged they were by the Bible verse. Many racers stopped and walked with me and I got to tell them how awesome God was and that He was my strength!”
As Katy finished the 2010 Kona World Championships, she understood why God wanted her to race that day. “I just got an overwhelming sense of peace and realized that God truly used this mishap to let me shine His light for others to see Him. It was better than anything I could have ever orchestrated!” Looking back on the race, Katy can say with certainty that it was far better to trust in God and His plans rather than her own desires and ambitions. “Got taught me to trust Him and listen! That prompted my wearing the shirt. It wasn’t me, I never would’ve considered it. But He used it and got scripture recited on NBC! That is cool!”
Though participating in Kona is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity that many of us will never experience, we as Christian athletes can use endurance sports to shine God’s light within every aspect of our training and racing. “I think FCA-E could impact the triathlon world by giving athletes a real purpose, not just for racing, but for living,” Katy said. “It’s pretty amazing how many people I have met who put their whole identity into what they do or how they perform, and that is so unsatisfying.” Much like Katy allowed God to use her in an incredible way at Kona, we as Christian athletes need to be willing to let God move in our lives and direct our course of action, even if His ways don’t make sense to us. Who knows…He might just surprise us!
Posted on Fri, February 11, 2011
by FCA Endurance