Sunday, May 15, 2011

When I was a little boy, I loved to climb: stairs, trees, walls, anything that would get me higher. One day, late in the afternoon, I climbed a tree not far from our house. I climbed almost to the top of the tree. It was wonderful up there, but as it got dark, I knew I had to climb down. Climbing down is always more difficult that climbing up--ask any rock climber and they will tell you the same. When I got to the last branch, it was completely dark and I could not find the crack in the trunk of the tree that I climbed up. I sat on that branch for a long time. Then, I heard my father calling. Even though I was ashamed at my failure, I called back to let him know where I was. It was too dark for me to see him, but I heard his voice from beneath me. He told me to hang from the limb and he would get me. I slowly lowered myself off the branch, but when I was hanging over the blackness beneath me, I couldn't feel his hands. He said I was just a little too high for him to reach me, so he told me to let go of that branch and he would catch me. I'd like to say that was all I needed to hear, but I was too afraid. He had to patiently ask me four or five times to let go. I finally trusted him (and my hands were hurting), so I let go and sure enough, I dropped safely into his arms. He hugged me and put me on the ground, and we walked hand-in-hand back to the house. How many of us find ourselves in the same situation in life? How many of us are just barely hanging on and very afraid? And yet, God, our Father, is waiting for us to trust in Him, to let go and drop into His waiting arms. Safety, security, happiness are all waiting just below us, but we still hang on to what we know in spite of the pain because of our fear. Let go of your fear, let go of that branch, let go--let God! You are not alone, you have support and help at hand, but you must let go because He will not come save you unless you do. This is what Kirkegard called the "great leap of faith". It is a hard thing to do, but it is the best thing you will ever do. Trust His voice, trust His waiting arms--let go!
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