|Tyler Law, age nine, strode in front of the gurney that was to take him to surgery for his cancerous arm. “Can I walk?” he had asked the orderly who came to get him. “Sure, kid,” the orderly had said as he fell in line behind the brave patient and joined the parents. The three of them watched as Tyler marched ten paces in front of them. He was raising his bad arm in the air and pumping his biceps in and out.
When they arrived at the prep room, his dad asked, “So, what was that arm-pumping thing about?” “Oh,” Tyler answered, “I just wanted to get as much use out of it as I could, in case they have to cut it off.”
Tyler lived on the brink of losing his arm and took every opportunity to use it for that which it was intended—movement. Muscles tightening, tendons flexing, joints moving, neurons firing. Not a second of enjoying that arm was going to be lost while Tyler still had the chance.
Tyler’s words also reveal more than his bravery. They strike a chord of truth about our lives: Use it. Now. I fear that in our modern Christian world, where we are quick to avoid burnout, we have not used our lives as they were intended. Paul admonishes us to take advantage of the opportunities afforded us to do good. Our lives have so much potential for doing good. We take for granted our time, our talents, our energy, and assume that they must be saved for some great purpose later. God’s purpose for us is not later; it is now.
The opportunities to use our lives for that which they are intended—loving God—are now. Find those opportunities today. Pursue them to the end bravely, knowing that this day might be the last afforded for such work.
Lord, I’m taking inventory of my life. What do I have that I’m not using? Where can it be applied today?