Last month, a small, toothless man named, Manohar Aich, celebrated his 100th birthday. Manohar has always taken great care of his body. So much so, that in 1952 he was named Mr. Universe. In other words, he was considered the world’s greatest body-builder that year, despite the obstacle of being only 4’11’’ tall. The muscularity and longevity have not been an accident for him. He maintained a strict diet, and at times worked out for 12 hours a day. Lifting weights was a regular part of his life as late as last year, when he was forced to stop after suffering a stroke. He is critical of lazy, younger body builders because they “don’t worship their body.”
There are several directions that we could go in learning some lessons from Manohar. We could admire his work ethic. We could praise the clean living that has helped him to some impressive physical accomplishments. Or we could look to the inevitable. Manohar, may have once had the best body in the world. Yet, despite his hard work he has still grown old. Furthermore, unless the Lord returns first, he will still face death before many more years. Then what will he have to show for worshipping his body?
Let’s remember the words of Hebrews 9:27 (NKJV) , “...it is appointed for men to die once, but after this the judgment”. There are a great many worthy accomplishments that we can celebrate in this life. Those things do have some value, and are a part of our journey through life. But ultimately, when this life is over, there will be only two accomplishments that mean anything to us. First of all, did we make it to heaven? Secondly, did we help anyone else get there? Friends, nothing else will matter. You won’t care in the slightest about your greatest achievement or your greatest failure, unless they relate to those two questions.
It is hard to keep the big picture in mind as we muddle through everyday life. But we should remind ourselves periodically of what things REALLY matter. Maybe the things that we stress about the most, really aren’t that important. On the other hand, maybe we aren’t stressed enough about the things that are important.