John Register

John Register was one of the top hurdlers in the United States. Twice he went to the Olympic trials. He had his eye on a third time. Between the second and third trials Register served his country on the battlefield and was unscathed, but when he returned home he lost a leg doing what he'd been doing most of his life - hurdling. A main artery was cut when he dislocated his knee. When the artery couldn't be rebuilt, the leg had to be amputated. Register was at the 1996 Olympics anyway - the para-lympics, as a swimmer.

"God has definitely used the loss of my limb," says Register. "I don't think it awakened me to the power He has, but I think it may have awakened a few others to God's awesome power. What I mean is, after I lost a limb, a lot of people thought that was going to be the end of my life, end of my career, and that never really entered into my mind, because I knew Christ before I had the injury. Having known Christ at that particular point in my life, and knowing He was already preparing me for something, I was able to get through that a lot easier."

Register is now preparing for the 2000 Paralympics in two sports — swimming and track and field. He will attempt to qualify in the 100 meters and the long jump.

Swimming with one leg was easier for Register to comprehend — but learning to long jump again was quite a challenge physically and spiritually.

"It had to do with putting confidence in this new limb," Register said of his artificial leg. "I could not figure out how I was going to land on this limb. It wasn't until I just went down the runway and jumped in the air to see what was going to happen that I had confidence. I had to take it on faith that it would work."

Register, who is preparing for full-time ministry, encourages everyone to have faith that Christ can work in their life — through good times and bad.

"I never asked God why I lost my leg," Register says. "The Lord was preparing me for something. His plan is perfect. God never ceases to amaze me, but I know I shouldn't be amazed because God can do all things."

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