I stood on the edge of the plane. Captivated. Terrified. My heart pounded in my ears, in my neck. Sweat poured down my back. It was so loud. My body vibrated with the plane. I turned back to the man giving instructions feeling wind-whipped. His voice boomed out and I was so interested in how he was saying what we needed to know that my eyes fastened on him. Fascinated
“This is the particular time that you need to pull the string to release the parachute… this is how it will happen”.
He gave the details as I listened intently.
When he finished I secured my ‘chute to my back and waited for his signal. I looked to my friend on my right and said “awesome, huh? That guy can really speak! Did you see his passion?! He must LOVE sky diving!” My friend just nodded, focused… as if he was trying to remember what he just heard.
Then we jumped. We jumped!! And we fell and fell and I was so mesmerized by everything happening around me.Transfixed. The dots becoming buildings and the ants becoming trees and the people becoming little sticks walking around and… I looked up. Further from anyone else. Below. In Danger. Everyone else had already released their parachutes and there I was free falling.
i pulled the string to release it forgetting all the directions the guy gave us. Forgetting why I was doing this. Forgetting the do’s and don’t’s because in the air, in the moment, in the emotion, in the.. journey… it didn’t seem to matter anymore.
And that’s what happens in real life to me. In real life. I didn’t really go skydiving.
In real life I sit on the chair at church and hear these great sermons.
“Pray! Become a person of Prayer so you can fight when the time comes!”
“Escape! Flee youthful lust!”
“Memorize scriptures! that’s how you battle temptation!”
“Kill your temptation, don’t play with it, drag it out int he street and beat it down! Don’t keep your pet sins, because they turn into ugly beasts”
“JESUS! He’s enough! HE Is all you need! He alone satisfies”.
And I walk away from each sermon thinking “what a great sermon. What a great message. How passionate and powerful”.
James 1:22 Do not merely listen to the word, and so deceive yourselves. Do what it says.
Ever wake up and realize you’ve been doing a lot a hearing and listening? I did. I do.
It’s like I walk away… and in the excitement of my journey… the scenery becomes all about me and what I can see…. and I end up being the idiot that free falls right to the ground instead of using the parachute and resources that have literally been handed to me. Not just handed to me but secured to me and even within me. I end up forgetting the instruction when hard times hit. I end up a lot more bruised and broken than if I had just heeded the Word. If I had just obeyed. If I had opened my heart not only to the emotions and the passion, but to the practicality of His word and His instruction. If I had let Him penetrate my heart…
It would have saved me so much pain… and angst… and loss…
This has been on my heart for a while now. And I have consciously since been trying to make each day… a day of obedience… but it’s SO hard! I forget what I’ve heard and I have to go review it. I forget in the worst of times. So I’m hoping that one day I have failed and reviewed and gotten back up again…again…and again…so much that it will have sunk into the utter depths of my heart and soul and I know without consciously thinking how to be obedient. So obedience can come without my white-knuckled-gripped-pained submission… and instead with my glad-hearted, open-armed-joyful surrender!