I’m hardly the acrophobic type; I don’t fear heights, although the natural tendency for any human being when in high places, is to initially fear. When you’re somewhere high up, for a moment you just feel vulnerable, unsafe, as though you’re going to fall off with one wrong move. That’s normal because we’re people of the ground, made to walk on land. But that does not limit us to explore what’s up there, hence, the advent of planes, the explorations on the moon, ascents to the highest peaks of the world, and every imagined extreme sports high up in the clouds.
So what is it about heights that appeal to us? Why does it excite men? Just today during BSF, I encountered Genesis 11, the story of the Tower of Babel. The people on Earth wanted to build a high tower, so high it would reach the heavens. Where ever did we get the idea that we can build a tower high enough to reach heaven? But that is beside the point. People, then and now, all want to “reach new heights” so to speak.
I guess it springs from wanting to conquer something bigger than ourselves. I’ve read three outdoor books in just two weeks and reading about the adventures that people take to conquer the highest mountains on the planet, facing the worst conditions, have reinforced my belief that people really have an inner quest to prove oneself against the powers-that-be: God, nature, and self. The question remains: can we really, truthfully conquer these three? People have staked so much to get to the highest peaks and yet nature has always succeeded in asserting itself more dominant. And who else created nature and all the wonders our eyes can see but God?
As for self, there are the little and big fears we try to conquer. I did say I wasn’t acrophobic, but I feared heights as any normal person does. The way I face it is actually to just go high up and deal with it right there. I’m the type you can bring along in a rollercoaster ride and expect to have both hands raised. I’m the type who would, if money weren’t a problem, fly with you right away to Macau and bungee jump at the highest bungee jump facility in the world. I’m the type to walk on planks as long as I have a harness and a safety rope. I get scared, yes, right at the moment where I can see with my own eyes that my life literally hangs on the balance. But the moment I begin to trust —either the rope that holds me, or the person that guides and assures me I won’t fall off —then I let go of my fears, and I let go.
The same is true with God. How can we trust in someone we do not see but we know to be big, unconquerable? Some people are afraid of God because, well, He is God. Is He safe? Can you count on Him? Depend on Him as you would a rope, a guide? Can he make you secure, safe?
Without a shadow of a doubt I say YES to all these —because I have seen and experienced for myself how trustworthy He is. Yes, He is big —all the more reason to trust him. That he created the entire universe, with all its splendor, and consider you and me, little beings on this planet, so special to be likened to His image, and called by name —how can you doubt? That He willingly gave up His only Son to save you and me, to give us life, to keep us from falling away from him forever —how can you doubt? The rope would fail; guides will, too. But God? You hold on to him once, and He will never let go. You accept him as your Savior and Lord, and you are forever secured and safe.
Want to reach new heights? I’d be more than safe to fall on Him.