Build with what you have

By Scott Westerman (Audio)

Whenever I feel like COVID-19 has changed the world I used to know forever, I remember some of the best advice I ever received:

Build with what you have.

Colleen alerted me to a story on this week’s edition of CBS Sunday Morning, originally broadcast in 2019, that hits “build with what you have” in the center of the target. It’s a visit with one of the top-ranked archers in the country. 38-year-old Matt Stutzman of Fairfield, Iowa was born without arms. Abandoned by his birth parents, he was adopted into a family with six kids who welcomed him as an equal. Matt decided he was going to do more than just exist. He was going to inspire. He became one of the best archers in the world, medaling in a sport that many would have written off as out of reach.

When my wife first got her cancer diagnosis a decade ago, we decided to live each day as if it might be our last; to leverage what we had to experience every moment with authenticity and gratitude. That transformed our lives and helped us through the many ups and downs that followed.

There are many silent warriors who are using the unique tools in their toolboxes to do good things.

The Jewish Sage, Rabbi Tarfon’s commentary on the Talmud includes this wisdom:

Do not be daunted by the enormity of the world’s grief. Do justly now. Love mercy now. Walk humbly now. You are not obligated to complete the work, but neither are you free to abandon it.

Build with what you have.