Swimming Past Disabilities

November 19, 2020
Volume 24, Number 42

Eleven years ago Anthony Capuano could have decided to take the path of least resistance. It was then that he was struck by a train, losing a leg in the accident. Fitted with a prosthetic leg, he might have given in to self-pity and settled for a life of little activity. Few would have blamed him for choosing such a course.

Instead, Capuano has worked hard to become a certified swim instructor and a lifeguard in Bayonne, New Jersey. Now he can add “hero” to his impressive resume.

On November 10 Capuano had just finished a workout at Hudson County Park when he heard screams from bystanders on the beach. He saw an SUV that was in the water and sinking. Inside was an older man who was yelling for help. Capuano didn’t hesitate: he removed his prosthetic leg and plunged into the water. With only one leg he managed to rescue the man and bring him safely to shore.

In one sense Capuano can be said to be disabled. But ask the man he pulled from the water, and it’s doubtful that word will be mentioned.

We remember Moses as a true hero of the Bible. There was a time, however, when Moses regarded himself as “disabled”. When God told him he would be sent back to Egypt to appear before Pharaoh, Moses pointed to a deficiency he had: “O my Lord, I am not eloquent, neither before nor since You have spoken to Your servant; but I am slow of tongue” (Exodus 4:10).

Did Moses suffer from a speech impediment? In Acts 7:22 Stephen described Moses – before he fled from Egypt as “mighty in words and deeds”. It’s not likely Moses needed the services of a speech therapist, but in his mind he was not up to the task. It was as if he was saying to God, “Lord, I’d like to help, but consider my disability.”

God saw this as an excuse, not a reason. He had already demonstrated His power to cause and to heal leprosy (Exodus 4:6,7). He then spoke to Moses’ so-called slowness of tongue: “Who has made man’s mouth? Or who makes the mute, the deaf, the seeing, or the blind? Have not I, the Lord?” (Exodus 4:11). Instead of focusing on his perceived weakness, Moses was challenged to focus on the power of the Lord.

What keeps us from answering the Lord’s call to serve? Do we point to deficiencies? If so, we should meditate on Ephesians 3:20: “Now to Him who is able to do exceedingly abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that works in us …”

God’s power is greater than we can imagine. That power will work in us – if we allow it. Let’s plunge into the water to rescue others around us who are crying out for help.

Come to the light God offers! Study His word, the Bible. Worship Him in spirit and truth (John 4:24). Get in touch with us if you’d like to discuss these ideas further.


Copyright, 2020, Timothy D. Hall. All scripture quotations, unless otherwise noted, are from the New King James Version (Copyright, 1990, Thomas Nelson, Inc.).

“LightGrams” is produced by the Central Church of Christ, 2722 Oakland Avenue, Johnson City, Tennessee, 37601, and is written by Tim Hall, minister. It is sent free of charge every Thursday to all who request it. To subscribe or to receive more information, write to “Tim@GraceMine.org” (our E-mail address), to the U.S. mail address above, or call (423) 282-1571.

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