Is There a Beating Heart?

And Jesus came and said to them, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you. And behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age.”

Matthew 28:18-20

Michael Brady was a stuntman at Universal Studios. He specialized in aerial skydiving stunts. On the day he died, Michael was in Benson, Arizona, preparing for a stunt in which he’d parachute onto the top of a moving train. Climbing up the ladder on the side of the train to check some rigging, Michael accidently fell, hitting his head and dying instantly.

A registered organ donor, Michael’s body was taken to the University Medical Center in Tucson. His heart was placed inside the body of another man – Bill Wohl, who had been kept alive for the previous 159 days by a temporary artificial heart.

The identities of organ donors used to be kept secret from the recipients. Now, after a waiting period, donor networks will facilitate contact between heart transplant patients and surviving family members.

Six months and one day after getting a new heart, Bill Wohl received a letter from Michael Brady’s family with a picture of Michael enclosed. Bill was surprised to find that he had the heart of a 36-year-old Hollywood stuntman. He said, “I looked at this picture – at this incredibly good-looking, super-fit, super athletic guy – and I thought, are you kidding me? That’s whose heart I’ve got?”

Before his heart transplant, Bill Wohl had been a Type-A, overweight, money-obsessed businessman pursuing a jet-setter lifestyle. Today, he works part time, spends most of his new-found energy winning speed and performance medals in swimming, cycling and track. His newborn passion for athletics is matched only by his commitment to the charitable organization he started – a foundation to promote and raise funds for organ donation.

Interviewed by a reporter in his Scottsdale condo, Bill Wohl leans forward in his chair, glances up at the bronze, silver, and gold medals he’s won, lowers his voice and wonders out loud what has changed him so much. Then Bill says: “Every day, all day, I thank God for Michael Brady. When I ride, when I work out … the biggest thing is to honor him.”

I ask you: Is there a beating heart? Is the heart of Jesus Christ beating in you? If it is, then His Great Commission will be your great obsession. When the heart of Jesus beats in your chest, the biggest thing in your life will be to honor Him and you’ll have the same passion for evangelism that He has.

Have a great day, and keep moving forward!