Twiddling our thumbs & clicking our heels
In the movie Good Will Hunting, Will Hunting is a mathematical genius with potential beyond imagining. His best friend Chuckie would lie down in front of an oncoming train for him. Chuckie believes Will is burying himself when he should be soaring. On the building site during a break they talk of Will’s future. Will says he’s going to live his life right there in the neighbourhood, get married and raise kids. Chuckie says, “Look, you’re my best friend so don’t take this the wrong way. In twenty years if you’re still livin’ here, comin’ over to my house, watchin’ the Patriot games and workin’ in construction—I’ll kill ya.”
Will protests and Chuckie goes on, “You’ve got somethin’ none of us—“
Before he can go further the irritated Will butts in, “Come on, why’s it always this, ‘I owe it to myself to do this or that’; what if I don’t want—”
Now Chuckie butts in. “No, no, you don’t owe it to yourself, you owe it to me. Cos tomorrow I’m gonna wake up and I’ll be fifty, and I’ll still be doin’ this…stuff. You’re sittin’ on a winnin’ lottery ticket and too much of a [jerk] to do somethin’ about it. I’d do anything to have what you’ve got…It’d be an insult to us if you’re still here in twenty years. Hanging around here is a waste of your time.”
The genius snaps back, “You don’t know that!” and they verbally spar for a moment.
“I don’t know that?”
“You don’t know that!”
“Oh…I don’t know that. Let me tell you what I do know. D’you know what the best part of my day is? It’s for about ten seconds, from when I pull up to the kerb and get up to your door and knock on it. Cos I think, maybe I’ll get up to your door and knock on it and you won’t be there. No good-bye, no see you later, no nothin’…you just left. I know that!”
Even Chuckie knew that great gifts and potential shouldn’t be squandered and that it's a glorious thing to see someone live life to the full. God has equipped his children, equipped them to be men and women against the darkness, equipped them to live in and beat the wilderness because they have known and know the grace of God (Leviticus 26:11-13). Many who don’t know God have dropped out of the pursuit of noble living and couldn’t care less; some even pride themselves in it. But there are those who listen to us and can’t help wondering why we’re as tasteless as egg-whites and as flat as a day old glass of Coke.
(I have slightly adapted this piece from a little book I wrote called “Celebrating the Wrath of God,” pages 182-184. Permission granted from Waterbrook Press, Colorado, a division of Random House.)
©2004 Jim McGuiggan. All materials are free to be copied and used as long as money is not being made.
Many thanks to brother Ed Healy, for allowing me to post from his website, theabidingword.com.