Earlier this week, on our company retreat, we went rock climbing for a team building activity. Now, I love physical activities and challenges, but I have a terrible, crippling fear of heights. As soon as we arrived at the facility, and I looked at the height of the walls, I told myself there was no way I was going to climb that high.
However, my competitive drive kicked in, and I wasn’t going to not try. So I tried. I climbed half way up the wall and froze in fear. I could physically go higher, but my mind told me that I could not. I panicked, not able to go any higher I came down. Dejected at my inability to keep going higher, I was frustrated and disappointed.
About 15 minutes later, I pep talked myself into going again. I knew I could do it. I knew I had the strength, I just needed to push myself higher. I had to trust in the harness and the rope. I had to believe that I wasn’t going to fall. I had to have faith that I could go higher.
So I got strapped into the harness and began to climb again. The first few steps were easy. I breezed through the lower part of the wall. Then, just like it happened the time before, I got to the same point, and I froze. Crippled in fear, I was stuck midway on the wall. My legs and arms began to shake, I looked down and panicked. I could not go any higher on this wall. Then, below me, all of my teammates began to cheer me on, encouraging me to keep going higher. There words were nice, but ultimately I needed to silence the voice in my head that told me I could not. I had to listen to the still small voice in my soul that told me I could. I let that voice be my guide as I took step by step, until I reached the very top. Higher than I thought I could go, but not higher than I could go.
That wall is life. I know sometimes I get stuck in a place, crippled by fear, scared to keep going, losing faith, looking backwards, and ultimately giving up. But God never intended us to be stuck. By His strength we can keep going, keep climbing, keep moving, and go higher, longer, further than we ever imagined or thought. When I came down from the wall, all of my teammates rushed me with hugs and high fives. My boss even told me to tap into whatever force led me to the wall the second time. That force, that will, that determination comes from the Lord, and I pray that I can listen to His voice when he whispers, “keep going higher, my rope will guide you, my harness will catch you, my love will never leave you, you will not FALL.”