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Helen Maroulis: God Made Me Enough

“I brought all my flaws on that podium when I stepped up.  Flaws in my wrestling are still there.  I still get a gold medal.  On the outside people might view me differently because they know I’m a gold medalist.  That might change their view of me.  But I’m like, ‘God, I’m not different.’  I was gold medal worthy this whole time.  This didn’t change me this didn’t add anything.  My name is Helen Maroulis and God made me enough.”

700 Club Reporter Mo Isom asked Helen Maroulis, “Take us back to what really drew you into wrestling, and that journey there?”

Helen said, “I started wrestling when I was seven years old, actually in this room.  This is where the beginners kid’s club started and my brother had joined.  And there wasn’t a lot of kids and he wouldn’t have had a partner so my mom told me to take off my shoes and jump in there.

Mo asked, “And you were the only girl at this time correct?”

Helen responded, “ Yeah.”

Mo asked, laughing, “So you’re seven years old you jump in the ring, you compete, I’m assuming you won?”

Helen said, “Only match I won all year.”

Mo asked, “So you lost the rest of the year?”

Helen answered, “I was one and thirty.”

Mo laughing said, “Oohhhh, my gosh that’s kind of awesome, you can say as an Olympian with pride, I started I was 1 and 30!”

Helen laughs, “Yeah!”

Mo added, “But you won the one that was important.”

Helen said, “Yeah.”

Mo said, “I want to talk about the gold medal match.  Because I know there was a history there of whom (Saori Yoshido) you were competing against.”  

“Here’s this woman who hasn’t lost in the last 16 years at a world or Olympic stage so you know if you’re going to do that at this weight class then she’s going to be there,” said Helen.  “So you can’t ignore that fact.  You have to train and study so I’m training and studying and I’d watch film and translate her interviews from Japanese to English and I’m trying to find weaknesses.  Yeah God, when I find the weakness then I’ll train for that specific thing and capitalize on it.  But I wasn’t finding anything.”

“And I felt like, God was like, ‘Instead of bringing someone down to a level you think you can reach, why don’t you respect them for where they are and try and surpass that level?’” said Helen.

“So you stepped out on the mat with her in Rio for the gold medal match, what was running through your head, what was running through your heart, were you in conversation with God then?” said Mo.

“Oh yeah.  The whole day, the whole day I was saying, ‘Christ is in me I am enough,’” said Helen. “ I can do all things through Christ who gives me strength.  I spent four years preparing and studying and so badly I wanted to wrestle this girl and I know she’s going to retire, so if I don’t wrestle her now I spent all this time. So for me when I got to wrestle her I felt it was God, ‘Here’s your gift. You wanted to wrestle her? You worked hard for it. Here you go, enjoy it.  Like you asked for it, here it is.’”

“Then you win, time expires, it’s 4 to 1,” said Mo. “ You have a decisive victory.  I feel like if I was in those shoes I’d probably not be able to process what’s going on in my mind.”

Helen responded, “I didn’t.”

“But after all you’d put into it, after all God’s taught you, after all the things He’s broken in you, rebuild in you, this whole journey, and you have the gold around your neck on the podium, take us there,” said Mo.

Helen said, “Ahh, it’s so much emotion and no emotion at the same time.  It was like my head was full and blank at the same time. And it was like I was seven-year-old, eight-year-old, nine-year-old, ten-year-old Helen all over again.  And I got to remember every single year on the journey.  And I was like God me? like me? little Helen, what?  And I was like normal people do win gold medals, it’s not a special club you need to be in, you don’t have to be special.  Like this is so cool.”

“On the outside people might view me differently because I have the gold medal, that might change their view of me but I’m like, ‘God I’m not different, this is awesome.’ I really was enough then and I’m really enough now,” said Helen. 

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