“Do you have rocks in your head?”
Although it’s a startling question, I knew what the person had in mind.
Recently we returned home from a pleasant autumn vacation to Vermont where we gained the title of “leaf peepers.” The colors were breathtaking. How could one tree be red, orange and green all at the same time? But it wasn’t just one, mountainsides were full of colored foliage. No, I didn’t have rocks in my head from leaf peeping.
My friend referred to my experience of zip-lining. My husband and I took an ‘Arbortrek Canopy Adventure’ one afternoon, which included eight zip lines through the treetops, two rope suspension bridges high above streams and rappelled from two tree platforms. Yep, some would say there were rocks in our heads. It was risky to push fear aside to do something totally unusual and unexpected. We stepped out of the comfort zone of terra firma and stepped off a tree platform forty feet above the ground.
Here are some things I learned from our adventure in overcoming risk:
Lesson 1: Have the right equipment and preparation.
A helmet, harness, and leather gloves were given to every participant. Safety lessons preceded the first zip. The right equipment provided safety and security.
Likewise, in the Christian life, we must be equipped with the knowledge of the Word and the strength of the Holy Spirit.
Lesson 2: Trust your guide.
Not only did we get a feel for the equipment and cable, we got to know our guides. We learned from them and grew to trust them. They wanted the best for us. They had the knowledge to teach and ability to increase trust in them.
In the Christian life with Jesus as our Guide, how do you trust Jesus for guiding you through the perils of life? Do you listen and heed His loving commands? As you gain more life experience, do you trust Him more each day?
Lesson 3: Grip tightly and look ahead to where you are going, not at what you are leaving.
The guide taught us the correct grip on the trolley: Right hand first, then left hand on top, then look ahead from the right. I relied his words and had confidence in the the equipment. When on the zip platform, I gripped the top of the trolley and entrusted my life to tethered straps, small wheels of the trolley, and a cable strung between tall fir trees.
In the Christian life, do you look at the problems, or do you grip the promises and strength of the Lord to carry you? Do you look ahead with hope?
Lesson 4: Step out of your comfort zone.
The guide said, “Now step out of your comfort zone and go!” Why did my feet suddenly become like cement? I had to refocus on where I was going, not where my feet were planted. Now was the moment of decision. Right, left, right. Hang on, and step off!
Zzzzzzzzzzip! The fresh air was exhilarating as I sailed through the canopy of fall colors, feet dangling yet holding on to the trolley for dear life. The next platform quickly came closer. Braking to slow down for my approach, I swung my feet up onto the platform. Getting unclipped from the cable, I felt another adrenaline rush with the realization: I did it! And I was ready to do it again!
Overcoming risk takes a lot of energy.
Prepare your heart.Trust Him. Grip to His Word tightly. Step out of your comfort zone. When we trust the Lord, He will guide us safely to the other side.
What challenges do you need to overcome?
Here are some scriptures to encourage you:
Psalm 31:14 “But I trust in you, O Lord; I say, You are my God.”
Psalm 34:4 “I sought the Lord and He answered me. He delivered me from all my fears.”
Hebrews 13:6 “So we can say with confidence, “The Lord is my helper; I will not be afraid. What can man do to me?” “
1 Peter 5:7 “Cast all your anxiety on Him because he cares for you.”
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