Dealing With The Unexpected

by Dawn Lashley

How would you feel 30 feet above the ground, suspended in midair, no net below, secured only at the waist by a harness, as you walked on a single tight rope? Frightened? Terrified? That was my experience.

Some years ago, I participated in a program called ‘Adventure Ropes.’ Its premise was that it offered you an opportunity to challenge yourself by putting you in uncommon situations, where you had to solve a problem.

Despite the program name, I had no idea this involved an aerial excursion. You can imagine my surprise when my group reached the first tree, and the instructor told us to look up.

An obstacle course had been created 30 feet above us. Each challenge took place in between 2 trees. For example, in one trial, you had to figure out how to pass around a series of triangles, walking on ‘floating steps’ without getting your harness ropes tangled and securing a red bandana along the way.

I quickly realized my comfort level with heights was not as secure as I once thought. Having seen one of my teammates, Shelley, make it to the first station only to grab the tree trunk for dear life and refuse to let go; I started wondering if I was ready for this.

The instructor called me over; all I could think was, ‘Dear God…HELP!’

How often do you face unexpected challenges in life? You may have prepared for one situation but instead received something altogether different. When left to make a decision, what will you do? Cower in fear? Run from your problems? Or trust in God who promises the victory through Christ Jesus? It does not mean it will be easy, but the God who promises He will never leave us or forsake us will walk you through it.

It is when you place your trust in Him, turning a deaf ear to your understanding and acknowledging your need and His capacity to help, that He can direct your steps.

I realized I had a choice to make at the base of that tree. I could cop out like Shelley and step away from the situation, failing to reach my full potential. Or I could place my faith in Jesus, who promises to be a refuge and strength when I am in trouble.

What did I do?

I took several deep breaths and climbed the tree, and slowly made my way through each obstacle. My heart was racing, my stomach was in knots, and I tried not to look down, but I did it! I made it to the end of the course. And I learned I have the capacity, with God’s help, to finish and not quit when faced with a difficult situation.

Are you facing difficulty today? Are you tempted to walk away rather than pursue victory? Let me pray for you:

Father, I thank you for this dear one.

Please give them the strength and courage to walk through this trial. As Paul said, at times, we are pressed on every side by troubles, but not broken, we are perplexed, but we do not have to give up and quit. As they place the challenge in your hands and trust in you for direction, they will overcome in your name.

Nothing is too hard for you, Lord. May your love and divine favor surround them. May your wise counsel rest upon them as they walk through this situation, trusting in the Waymaker who can do anything but fail.

Now, remember, to the victor belongs the spoils, not to the one who walks away.