A few weeks ago I was in the gym. One of the fitness instructors walked up to me and started asking me gym guy questions like,
"What are you working on?"
"How's your workout going?"
"How long have you been coming to this gym?"
To be honest I'm not a morning person and it was around 6am. I was just like, "I don't know dude. I'm working on my deltoids or androids or some kind of "oid." I'm just here. You should be proud of me for that."
He didn't laugh. He just went on to espouse the benefits of working out. Little did he know that I had been getting irritated looking up at all of the workout posters hanging up all over the gym, er, I mean "fitness center." Literally before he walked up I was looking at one that told me that if I worked out I'd be happy. I told him how all of the posters kind of irritated me and how I was thinking about making a t-shirt to work out in that had these words on the back,
"Work out…delay the inevitable."
I told him this and he just kind of looked at me like "What?" It was early and I was tired so I kind of went off. I said, "Because we are all going to die dude. You're going to die. I'm going to die. No matter how hard we work out. No matter how big our biceps are. No matter how much we leg press, bench press or shoulder press we are all going to die."
Blank stare from the fitness instructor. So I continued with my groggy, early morning rant.
"Do you have a 25′ tape measurer at home?" I asked.
"Yes" he replied with a look of what-in-the-world-have-I-gotten-myself-into wonderment.
"Let's say one inch represents 100 years. That would be a long time to live. Right?"
He nodded. So I continued.
"Can you imagine living that long?" I asked.
"No. That's a long time to live" was his response.
"So if one inch represents 100 years" I continued "if you pulled out all 25′ worth of tape measurer that would represent 30,000 years. Can you imagine living that long?"
"No" he said, scratching his head, I'm sure wishing he had never asked me what muscle group I was working on.
But I was on a ranting roll now so I just kept going, "Let's say you could keep pulling beyond 25′. Let's say you could keep pulling the tape out until it wrapped all around the world once and then again and again and again until the entire world was covered in tape measurer yellow. That would represent a long, long time. Right?"
"Well that would be the beginning of the first day of eternity. But we worry about how big our biceps are in the inch."
He gazed at me with suddenly engaged eyes and asked, "Are you a preacher or something?"
Girding myself for some pushback I was surprised at what he asked me then, "Would you pray for me? I have 95% blockage in my arteries and half to go in to the hospital on Tuesday for either an angioplasty or open heart surgery and I'm kind of scared."
Suddenly my rant stopped. I was able to share the good news of Jesus with this fitness instructor and he was totally open to it!
A conversation that an average person could have easily dismissed as Christian gobleygook became immensely relevant when life and death were hanging in the balance.
We never know when somebody will need that conversation so we need to constantly have it. We, as believers, must be the ones who continually remind a watching world of life "after the inch." We also need to remind ourselves that what matters most is what we do now that will prepare ourselves and others for life after the inch!
Are you ready for life after the inch? Have you put your faith in Jesus alone for the salvation of your eternal soul based on what He did for you when He died in your place on the cross and rose from the dead? Because He died your sins can be forgiven. Because He conquered death you can too someday!
Are you getting others ready for life after the inch? Are you sharing the good news of Jesus with everyone you can? If not start today!
P.S. The fitness instructor made it through the procedure just fine. But even if he hadn't he'd be just fine…even better!