After undergoing knee surgery in 2008, American sprinter English Gardner was told she could never run again. But her doctors did not know that God has another thing in mind for her.
Last Sunday, Gardner qualified for the Olympics in Rio de Janeiro next month after she became the fourth-fastest American in history and the seventh fastest sprinter in the world, CBN News reports.
Gardner set a new personal record of 10.74 seconds in winning the 100-metre dash at the U.S. Olympic Track and Field Trials in Oregon last week. According to CNS Philly, her time would have won every Olympic 100-metre dash event held except that in 1988 when Florence Griffith-Joyner ran 10.62.
Jesus was on Gardner's lips right after she crossed the finish line. "Thank you, Jesus. Thank you, Jesus. Oh God I praise you. I give you so much glory," she said while slapping the ground on her knees as seen in the video of her record-breaking run. That online video has reportedly been viewed more than 1 million times and got 15,000 likes and about 800 comments.
Gardner shed tears of joy after her record-shattering run which her doctors never imagined she could do after she tore her right ACL, MCL and lateral meniscus eight years ago. Those injuries nearly ended Gardner's dream of excelling in her sport as colleges withdrew their scholarship offers on her, except for the University of Oregon.
"I cried my eyes out and came to the realization that I never wanted to feel that feeling again. And so when I crossed the line and saw the results, I didn't really care if I came in first, second or third, I was just excited that I made the team," Gardner said.
She said she gained her inspiration to push her capabilities to the limit and beat the odds after reading the biblical accounts on David and Goliath, Noah and Daniel in the lion's den, according to The Oregonian.
Gardner became the fastest female American sprinter since Carmelita Jeter ran 10.70 on the same track at Hayward Field in June 2011, according to CNS Philly.
Only Griffith-Joyner, whose performances have been questioned for years, Jeter and disgraced drug cheat Marion Jones have run faster than Gardner in U.S. track history.
Gardner will have two chances of winning an Olympic medal as she will compete in both the 100-metre race and the 400-metre relay.
The track events of the Rio Olympic Games begin on Aug. 12.