Hawaii shark attack didn't beat Bethany Hamilton; it inspired her

(Photo: REUTERS / Danny Moloshok)Surfer Bethany Hamilton arrives at the Teen Choice Awards in Los Angeles August 7, 2011.

Nearly losing her life and left without an arm in a shark attack did not cow Bethany Hamilton.

Rather, it strengthened her belief in God inspiring her to seek to inspire people all around the world.

Hamilton spoke to Liberty University in Lynchburg, Va. on October 14 where she shared her story and the obstacles she has had to overcome.

She explained how God has helped her cope with the loss of her arm.

When she was 13, in 2003 Hamilton was attacked by a 14-foot (4.3 meter) shark while surfing in Kauai, Hawaii.

"In addition to losing her arm, the teen also lost 60 percent of her blood and faced major challenges in re-learning many life skills," theblaze.com reports.

During her visit at the Liberty University's weekly Convocation, she shared her appreciation for God using her to touch people throughout the world.

Hamilton's arm was torn off just below the shoulder, leaving her surfing career in question, nonetheless she said at the Christian last week that in his greateness God doesn't abandon his children

"I look back on my life now," said Bethany Hamilton, "and I am just in awe that God can take a little girl from a tiny island in Hawaii and use my story all over the world to reach so many people," she told the Liberty crowd.

Hamilton's main message to the crowd was to trust God.

"As I grew up with one arm and relearned how to surf, God taught me that he can take the hard times that I went through and turn them into something beautiful," she told the audience, Charisma News reported.

Despite the tragic event and the difficulties she has had to face, she has continued to surf, be positive, and speak to the world about faith.

"I think that he can do that for each and every one of you. He can take what you have been through and use it for good if you are willing to share what he has done for you," she said at Liberty.

She continued her dreams of surfing and in 2007 turned professional, in 2007 and cites her faith as one of her biggest inspirations to pursuing her surfing career.

Dennis Quaid and Carrie Underwood starred in a movie made on her book Soul Surfer. Anna Sophia Robb, currently on 'The Carrie Diaries, portrayed Hamilton.

She is currently on tour with the Association of Surfing Professionals. In 2010 she was the 20th ranked woman among surfers.

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