As facebook and tweeter feeds flood with messages of condolence and encouragement for one man, i am moved to write.
Lee Chong Wei.
I can only imagine what the Olympics gold meant for you. I can only imagine the unsaid burden of hopes of 28 million people. I can only imagine how heart wrenching it must be to be so close but yet so far. twice.
But even as the final shuttle struck the ground amidst euphoric screams, the silent cries of a man who gave his all was heard. It was deafening.
In the ensuing silence, the heart of a nation wept for the man who truly deserved the Olympic gold - The man who would go on to say
In a way, i would ask what is there to be sorry about? He did everything humanly possible to do what he set out to do. Through pain, through injuries, through setbacks and even through criticism from a nation he single-handedly shouldered hopes for. After all this, he says sorry?
Truly there is nothing to be sorry about. But somehow there was something about that apology which reflected the man who won the hearts of not only the nation but even the world. Though not crowned the champion, this a man i would call a hero.
Acts Church puts it this way,
"Tonight something stirred the hearts of Malaysians. Champions are made in a second, Heroes lasts a lifetime."
I totally agree.
I think something magical happened last night.
The whole world was moved. Not just Malaysia but the neutrals and even
the Chinese. I came across an fb status asking why God didn't bless the one who needed the blessing. A very valid question indeed. But if you'd open your eyes a bit bigger and see the aftermath of what happened, you'd realize He actually did. Lin Dan could never accomplish what Chong Wei did even with 3 more Olympics Golds under his belt. I don't know if this is applicable, but i remember Matthew 5:5 which says " Blessed are the humble for they will inherit the earth."
On a personal account, I'm reminded of the days when i used to watch then top malaysian Ong Ewe Hock play. Despite the fact that winning titles was not a norm, i think what inspired me most was the way he played and how he would go for every shuttle. Even if it meant ending up sprawling on the ground without a point. Nope definitely didn't win him titles. But I always remember picking up my racket not long after that.
Chong Wei has done the nation proud. Even if does not end with a gold medal or history being made. I'm pretty sure it has sparked many little boys and girls to pick up their racket. I for one am going to pick up mine.