About this event:
Created by cingram
Isn’t it funny how our children can persuade us into doing things we never thought we’d do? For Maggie’s 10th birthday, she asked only to go zip lining up at Red Mountain. She didn’t want a party, she didn’t want presents, and cake was optional. She simply wanted to go risk all of our lives swinging from one tree to the next like monkeys. No biggie. EXCEPT, Jason has a tiny (big) fear of heights. And those zip-lines at Red Mountain are way up in the treetops.
Now, since we have just celebrated Maggie’s 13th birthday, there’s spoiler alert. We all survived. And I’ll let Jason share his own experience but I will say that having other Dads there was motivating.
I wasn’t scared. I was so excited! Until…
When we arrived at the park, we checked in, were issued helmets and harnesses, and had to sign legal documents that we wouldn’t sue when we died. Also, one of the legal documents said that I had not lied about my weight on my registration form!
To make sure we hadn’t lied about our weight, the staff had each of us step on a scale. Outside. For everyone to see. Oh Mylanta.
I get it. The tethers to the zip line have to be adjusted just right for each person’s weight. I get it. But, Man. That was the 2nd hardest part of the experience.
After clicking our helmet straps under our chins, we began the climb up the 100 feet into the trees on wooden steps. And then one at a time, with our guide’s instruction, we simply had to step off the platform into thin air. That’s all. Just make a step. INTO THIN AIR. The momentum of my weight and the descent angle would do the rest.
Maggie had no problem. She stepped off that platform and was zipping off in complete joy.
The hardest part of my experience was stepping off the platform. I saw other people do it. The guide was right there. I had the harness adjusted right and my helmet tightened just in case. They couldn’t make me do it, I had to do it on my own. The step had to be mine. Everyone was waiting for me to just go.
Looking back at those moments, I can only imagine Peter looking at the sloshing water hitting the boat and trying to wrap his head around that first step. Would it hold his weight? His good buddy, who he had just witnessed feed 5000 men with a child’s sack lunch, was now balanced on top of that water telling them it was okay and not to be afraid. Peter asked Jesus to command him to do it; to give him a dare. Jesus said, “Come.” Was it the other disciples watching from the same boat or Jesus’ calm reassurance that gave him the courage? He did it. He got out of the boat. He did it! Can you imagine the excitement of standing on water looking at Jesus? I hope heaven has water to walk on with Jesus.
And then Peter remembered the wind and water and danger. Have you ever gotten yourself into an amazing project and then panicked it was going to be too difficult to complete? I do this often. Getting up into the zip-line trees was amazing. I had made Maggie so happy by signing us up to go! There were 10 platforms on the zip lining trip that I was going to have to step off of. Standing on that first platform, I was panicked thinking of platform 2 and 3 and 10.
Peter thought the hardest part would be getting out of the boat. He soon learned that keeping faith, his eyes on Jesus, would be the hardest. And Peter sank. Jesus knew Peter would become overwhelmed when He called him out onto the water. Jesus wasn’t mad, or irritated, or worried. I think he was proud of His friend for getting out of the boat to begin with. It was that day when Peter learned what trusting God looks like. What an awesome day for Peter!
So what went through my mind just before stepping off that platform? “Jesus, catch me.” That is what I said over and over. Jesus catch me.
Flying through the air over that gorgeous forest was the reward for my courage. If I had chickened out, I would have missed that beautiful experience.
When we step out in faith, we can be sure Jesus is there. Are you ready to get out of the boat?
When it is time to leave our homes and return to school and work after this pandemic is over, is that first step going to be scary? Maybe. Keep your eyes on Jesus. Jesus catch us!
I love you! I miss you! God Bless you!