Thirty- six years later I was standing in a gymnasium in Birmingham, AL explaining to a group of high school students how to swing on a rope. I reached above my head and grabbed the rope I’d suspended from the ceiling that morning and leaned into it. My feet were still the ground. It felt like a small mammal wriggled it’s way through my shoulder and then the pain started. Long story short the long head of the tendon on my right bicep separated and curled into my upper arm. Fast-forward to the Orthopedic Center where my doctor explained that it was all those push ups and pull ups that caused this. Well not really. He said, “You’ve had a previous shoulder injury that created a bone spur on your rotator cuff and over the years or doing push ups and pull ups you basically sawed it in half.” I protested. The only shoulder injury I’ve ever had was in high school…never mind.” I couldn’t live with the humiliation. Turns out it was a partial tear and three weeks later on a Sunday night in the Atlanta airport it finished tearing. Maybe I’ll post a picture of my blackened and bruised arm on Facebook and someone in the class of ’81 who still knows Cindy will show it to her.
Who’d have thought that such a little thing thirty- six years ago would have consequences three and half decades later? By the time you read this the MRI will have told me if I’m gong to have surgery or not.
Actions have consequences. Even benign, trivial, seemingly meaningless choices create ripples that oscillate into our futures. Sometimes it’s not even about right and wrong. Sometimes it’s about smart or dumb. Paul talks about the liberty we have as Christians and whether things are lawful, expedient, helpful or beneficial (I Cor. 6:12 ff and I Cor. 10:23 ff)