Be Inspired Sunday: Bethany Hamilton

January 6, 2013 in Uncategorized

Sometimes you’re cruising along through life and out of no where you get side swiped.

Sometimes there’s a warning.

You know a storm is coming.

You’re prepared.

But then there are times when you get knocked down by a wave you never anticipated.


Last night we watched the movie Soul Surfer

For the SEVENTH time!!

You know how sometimes your children get stuck on movies

That they just watch repeatedly

Well, my daughter Charlotte just LOVES this movie

Bethany Hamilton is her hero

Here is Charlotte with some of her Bethany Hamilton books





This movie is the true story of Bethany Hamilton

Who at age 13 was on the brink of greatness in her surfing career

When very suddenly a shark came out of no where and took her arm.


Can you imagine out of all the cruel twists of fate–why that?

Why her arm?

Why a shark attack?

It’s true that tragedy can strike us at any time.

But the irony is that what she loved the most–the water

Would also be the location of her worst nightmare.


It’s easy to become bitter.

So many things can happen in this life

That it’s almost natural to just shut the door

And never let something back in

That could potentially twist the knife even deeper.

Yet, Bethany Hamilton returned to the water.

It was never even a question in her mind that she would.

Can you imagine being only 13 and having that much resolve?


To me, the most inspiring part of her story

Is an interview she gave back in 2003 right after it all happened.

The interviewer asked her if she’d ever surf again.

You can watch the look on her face.

It’s almost one of confusion.

As if she can’t even believe he’s asking her that question.


He asks her: Do you think you’ll get back in the water again?

Her answer: Do I think?  I know.  

We don’t always know what obstacle will come our way.

But there is one thing you can know.

It will come.


When you find yourself knocked down by the waves of life

Don’t question whether you should try again.

Don’t wonder if you can.

 Know you can.

And you will.


There’s really only one way to lose

And that’s to quit.

So don’t quit.


Don’t think about all the things that could have been.

How much better your life would be

If this or that hadn’t happened.

If I started dwelling on all the things

I wish had never happened

I’d probably never get out of bed again.

Husband left me. Check

Mom died. Check

Gained 300 pounds. Check

Lost job. Check

House flooded. Check

Nana died. Check

Dwelling on those things

Never got me anywhere

Except straight into a bag of Reeses Peanut Butter Cups

With some Kit Kats on the side


But what if we looked at those tragedies as an opportunity instead?

Have you ever heard the phrase

When God closes one door, He opens a window

I think sometimes we just sit staring at the closed door

Instead of focusing on the window He has opened

And exploring where that can take us

Bethany Hamilton was asked if she could back and change what happened, would she?

Her response was this:

“NO–because now I can embrace more people than I ever could have with two arms”.

Isn’t that amazing?

Who would have thought losing one arm would give her more opportunities than she ever had with two?

And that she would be willing to consider those opportunities instead of dwell on her loss?

That takes courage.

It takes being willing to stop staring at the shut door and start looking at the open window.

When I face obstacles, I remind myself of the people who have had to overcome so much.

And I tell myself to go to the window


I hated breaking furniture

I hated never fitting anywhere

Or not being able to wear shoes

Or sleep in a bed

Due to my weight


But if none of those things had happened to me

I never would have met all of you!

Those of us who have been down that road

Share a bond

Something almost no one but us will ever understand

And because of our very personal experiences struggling with this

We can now use that

To help others still trapped

In that pit


Consider the possibilities

And don’t look back

I’m inspired by Bethany Hamilton.  I hope you’re inspired to!


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{ 9 comments… read them below or add one }

Sharon Cullen January 6, 2013 at 4:58 pm

It’s funny that you mentioned her because just this week Bethany was on a rerun of Are You Smarter Than a Fifth Grader. Weird coincidence. I greatly admire her and her dedication and determination.
Sharon Cullen recently posted..Merry ChristmasMy Profile


Lady Amanda January 6, 2013 at 5:03 pm

We loved that movie too! The pic of Charlotte is soo cute. She is a ray of sunshine! Another great post!


Jenn@slim-shoppin January 6, 2013 at 6:05 pm

I just found your site – you look amazing and I think you’ve done a great job losing the weight – what an inspiration to everyone! Happy New Year to you and I’ll be coming back for inpiration 🙂


Amanda January 6, 2013 at 7:00 pm

Awesome post! I have yet to see that movie….looks good though, I may have to pick it up at Lifeway.


Tammy January 6, 2013 at 8:54 pm

Charlotte is so CUTE! I want to adopt her please.

I have Soul Surfer on the DVR but haven’t watched it yet. It does sound like an amazing tale and one of inspiration for sure. I’ll have to check it out soon, if not later today. Thanks for sharing.
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Chubby McGee January 6, 2013 at 8:57 pm

I love, love, LOVE this post.

Every word is true and inspirational.

Thanks for reminding me just how important it is to just. keep. going.



Lori January 6, 2013 at 10:47 pm

When my niece was about 9 she told me about this movie that was her very favorite of all time and I just must watch it. It was Soul Surfer. I put it in our Netflix queue and forgot about it until it arrived sometime later. Although, I knew Bethany’s story, I did not expect to be moved by that movie the way I was. I was impressed by my niece’s ability to grasp the importance of the movie. It is still her favorite movie and she calls me every time she watches it.


Cindy January 6, 2013 at 10:57 pm

I still need to see Soul Surfer! I have a list of movies that I never made it to the theater to see, and it’s on there!

I love your blog. You never fail to inspire me.
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Katrin January 7, 2013 at 12:14 am

Very inspiring post. It is so nice to see your daughter looking up to someone like Betheny. So many girls today seem to have the wrong kind of role models portrayed to them in the media.
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