Dream the impossible. Go out and make it happen. I walked on the moon. What can you do? ~ Captain Eugene A. Cernan, Commander of Apollo XVII, “The Last Man on the Moon”
I am haunted by this quote after recently watching “The Last Man on the Moon” documentary. Afterward, I visited a memorial website to honor one of our nation’s most revered human treasures, Captain Gene Cernan (1934-2017). Like so many others, I sought to find out more about the man behind the astounding achievements recorded in his book and documentary, “The Last Man on the Moon”. To me, his life symbolizes sacrifice and perseverance in the face of daunting perils associated with exploring the unknown reaches of space. He faced such challenges with unwavering resolve and great faith in himself and in countless others who worked behind the scenes to place him in orbit around the earth and, ultimately, on the moon. His story empowers me to ask the same question he did:
What Can You Do?
Or more importantly, What Can I do?
What can I do with God’s personal and precious gift of mysterious energy we call life?
On my own, I realize that my life’s achievements are insignificant in the eyes of the world. I am a mere speck of dust – or perhaps less. On the day of my departure from this world, I will be missed by a few friends or family members briefly and then – nothing…. but Captain Gene Cernan will live on in the hearts and minds of Americans far into the future. In recent years Captain Cernan wanted to leave us a piece of himself while he still lived among us. He wanted us to know that we should never give up on ourselves. His message was to strive for our dreams and never give up on us.
Today I choose to take that advice literally both as an individual and also as a nation. Even though we live in times of negativity, division, or defeat, I am encouraged – no, inspired – by the exemplary life of a national icon who reached out to the stars and beyond for answers to questions about our universe. What he achieved is really BIG when you think about it.
So back to, What Can I do?
The strangest thing happened to me this morning as I pondered this question. I felt a spiritual spark begin to pulse within me. Do you ever get ignition – right out of nowhere? – that moment of thought conception that tugs and stretches until it becomes realization? I’m talking about the sort of realization that comes from the gut; who knows – from the Holy Spirit? It is the gripping realization of some genetically placed truth that I have known from before the womb. In my case, it is the knowledge that “I can do all things through Christ, which strengthens me”, confirmed in God’s Word in Phil. 4:13. If my obedience pleases God through Christ, it has all been accomplished under the direction and strength of His Holy Spirit. That’s a ton of power and God-Given No-How. Therefore, it will be remembered for eternity.
I guess Gene Cernan was right. There is unlimited potential in each one of us, and since our Heavenly Father never gives up on me, then I shouldn’t either.
They will still yield fruit in old age, They shall be full of sap and very green, To declare that the Lord is upright; He is my Rock, and there is no unrighteousness in Him. ~ Psalm 92:12-15 NASB
The Lord reigns… For He is our God, And we are the people of His pasture and the sheep of His hand. Today, if you would hear His voice, Do not harden your hearts… ~ Psalm 93:1a, 95:7-8a NASB
“Father, please guide me by Your Spirit to live up to my potential for service to You and Your Kingdom. Give me strength to perform Your will and the wisdom to understand it. Glory and Praise to You for Your everlasting love toward mankind. Thank you for planting Your Greatness in me before the earth and moon were ever formed; in the powerful and matchless Name of Yeshua, our Messiah, Amen.”
I guess that brings us back to Gene’s question, “What Can You Do?”
God Bless and keep you all.
Photo credit: NASA