I wonder if it’s too late to back out? I don’t think I can do this…
My fingers clutched the cargo net with a death grip. I forced my feet to keep climbing. Up, up I went until I reached the platform where our zip line tour would begin. I felt my breathing accelerate as I fought back a panic attack. I am terrified of heights! What on earth have I gotten myself into?
I looked over at Hubby and asked, “You know I love you, right?” He perceived my unspoken meaning – I’m doing this because I love you. I would totally back out right now if it was up to me! He smiled his approval and support.
My husband loves adventure. He enjoys the thrill of adrenaline that comes from doing ridiculously dangerous stunts, which he assures me are completely safe (like riding rollercoasters!) Me? I find quite thrilling the safety and security of keeping my feet on the ground, thank you very much. (I do realize this makes me a very boring companion at amusement parks!)
However, around Christmastime I got this brilliant idea that I should buy Hubby and myself zip line tickets. I would be brave. And he would be proud. And we would have fun. It all made sense at the time. But as I climbed to the first of eight platforms, I began to question my sanity at Christmastime.
When my turn for the first zip arrived, I focused on the next platform and refused to look down. I dared not hesitate. I stepped off the platform and sailed through the air. And guess what? I survived! Each zip got easier. That is, until the grand finale – 1000+ feet long, over the racing river and through the woods. I started to panic again as I picked up speed. But halfway across, I realized – I had a bird’s-eye view of some pretty amazing scenery. It was the thrill of a lifetime!
But I almost missed it, because of fear.
It made me think about my life in general. How often do I cling to safety and security when God calls me to step out in faith, and soar – above fear, above mediocrity, above the worries that hinder me from running after Jesus with reckless abandon? “Those who trust in the Lord will renew their strength; they will soar on wings like eagles…” (Is. 40:31 HCSB).
Here are a few thoughts I learned on the zip line:
- Though I had wanted for years to experience a zip line, that desire alone could not have conquered my overwhelming fear of heights. But love did. I love my husband and wanted to give him this shared experience. The power of love is stronger than the power of fear. When we experience the depth of God’s love, fear loses its power over us. We are free to follow Him out of reciprocal love. (See 1 Jn 4:18.)
- I was not alone. My husband was right there – either going ahead, standing beside or coming up behind. Similarly, we never face fear alone. The God of angel armies is constantly with us. (See Ps 46:1-3.)
- I trusted my equipment. Logic reminded me that this company wouldn’t be in business unless they had taken necessary precautions to ensure my safety. In the spiritual realm, we know that our God has given us everything we need for life and godliness. He is trustworthy. Where He calls us, He will sustain us. (See 2 Pet 1:3.)
I discovered (much to my amazement) that a zip line is pretty thrilling. But nothing compares to the thrill of experiencing life with Jesus. May we refuse to settle for the path of least resistance. May we step out in faith wherever He calls and know the joy of soaring with Jesus!
How about you? Where Is God calling you to step out in faith today? Is fear holding you back?