I’m pretty sure that “splat!” is the sound made when a bug hits the windshield of a car whizzing by at 60mph. I’m equally confident that’s what Kyle and Will heard when I smashed into the racquetball wall going just as fast. And had I not gotten my hands up to protect my noggin, it would’ve exploded like a bug. Instead my left knee took the direct impact.
Watching on, Kyle thought he needed to load me up and taxi me to the hospital. Or the morgue. He wasn’t sure at first.
A week later, I’m okay. Praise the Lord.
I recently started playing racquetball again after a long absence because I want to teach Will how to play. It’ll be a gift for both of us. I used to be obsessed with the game and I played hard. I’m a bit competitive. It’s more about an intense white-hot hatred of losing than purely the enjoyment of winning.
So it wasn’t the first time I’ve hit a wall. But it most assuredly was the hardest.
Kyle chided me saying I should slack up and live to play another day.
Neil Young had it right. It’s better to burn out than fade away.
People often say that life is short. I believe it can be too long.
If you’re not living with purpose, the days can be incredibly long. I visited my mom today at the rehab center and a couple of men dropped by to sing gospel songs in the cafeteria for the patients. It was a real treat. I glanced around the room and noticed all of the broken bodies in wheelchairs and all of the oxygen tanks. But I could tell these folks loved Jesus as they sang along to “Amazing Grace”, “The Old Rugged Cross” and other classics. I reflected on whether these silver haired grandmas and grandpas thought that God was done with them, couldn’t use them any longer? If so, I can’t imagine how painfully slow the days pass.
Yes, they can’t do what they once did, but there’s still vitally important work they can do. And do it better now than ever before.
With the grey hair and age comes wisdom and experience. They’ve witnessed the faithfulness of God. They’ve seen His loving kindness. God has proven Himself to them over and over. These old saints are a treasure trove of stories about the goodness of God. People visit these folks everyday who need to hear these stories. We need the Godly wisdom that these golden-agers possess.
They still have purpose. It’s an eminently supreme one that’s worth burning out for.