Chariots Of Fire

378px-Eric_LiddellThis week-end I watched the film, “Chariots of Fire” for the first time in a long time. It moved me again. That must be the greatest theme song of any movie ever. (

For those of you who’ve forgotten the plot, or maybe you weren’t even hatched when this winner of four academy awards came out in 1981, here’s a quick summary:

“Based on a true story, Chariots of Fire is the internationally acclaimed Oscar-winning drama of two very different men who compete as runners in the 1924 Paris Olympics.

Eric Liddell (Ian Charleson), a serious Christian Scotsman, believes that he has to succeed as a testament to his undying religious faith. Harold Abrahams (Ben Cross), is a Jewish Englishman who wants desperately to be accepted and prove to the world that Jews are not inferior. The film crosscuts between each man’s life as he trains for the competition, fueled by these very different desires.”  (

From the role of the Christian, Liddell, two powerful things leaped out for me. One was when his devout sister tried to persuade him to stop running. In the film Eric answers, “I believe God made me for a purpose, but he also made me fast. And when I run I feel His pleasure.”

“When I run I feel His pleasure.”

In the film his father, J.D. Liddell, a missionary to China, says to him, “You can praise God by peeling a spud if you peel it to perfection. Don’t compromise. Compromise is a language of the devil. Run in God’s name and let the world stand back and in wonder.” Continue reading