One of my favorite things to during my free-time is travel. I love exploring new cities, learning more about the history of each place and where the best local coffee shops are. I love grabbing my camera and taking pictures of things that are either visually appealing to me or I believe would make a good memory years down the line. It’s almost a form of therapy for me and one of the ways I feel connected to God and His handiwork.
Out of all of the places I’ve traveled, there are a few that stand out to me for various reasons – some good and some bad. However, I think the one that stands out to me the most is the one that was by far the craziest.
I went ziplining.
I know most of you are probably thinking, “big whoop.” Yet for me, someone who’s petrified of heights, stepping outside of my comfort zone and ziplining in the wilderness was a huge step in faith for me. What made it even scarier was the instructor mentioned that there’s a chance we could actually accidentally go backwards on the zipline and therefore end up suspended, in the middle of the zipline where the only way out was down – into the murky water. For a girl who cannot swim, this did not sound like the best case scenario.
But after seeing many of the women from my church say goodbye to their fears as they jumped from the platform at the resort where we were staying for the women’s retreat, I realized I had to face my fears and step out in faith..literally.
So, hesitantly, I put on the gear they provided, walked up the wooden steps and was face-to-face with the instructor who I was trusting would not push me off of the platform, but would also help to coax me into doing it. He’d already harnessed me in, but I was so scared. I stood there for what seemed like centuries, looking at the space in front of me, watching the kids below me playing in the gaga pit and looking at that infamous, murky water in the middle of the zipline course that I knew I could not swim in.
“I can’t do it.” I said, softly, hoping that he’d take my confession of fear as valid and help me out of the stocky harness.
Yet to my surprise, his response, like many of the women supporting me that day was, “have faith. I believe in you.” or something to that effect. I don’t quite remember for verbatim, but I remember feeling like I was screwed because there I was, freaking out on the platform, kids now watching from below, one of the women from our church recording us, and had everyone cheering me to go. My fear was saying, “absolutely not” yet faith was telling me to step out and face these fears.
I remember one of the last things I asked was, “can you push me off?”
“You sure?” I took that as him saying it would probably be better if I jumped off because if he pushed me, I would’ve probably been even more freaked out.
Finally, I said a little prayer, and I jumped.
I wish I could say that I didn’t scream the whole way, but I was petrified, y’all. If it wasn’t bad enough that I was afraid the whole time, I was spinning the whole time. Yep, the WHOLE time. So as I am traveling down this zipline to the other side, all I could think is, if I end up going backwards, my weight is going to propel me back to the middle of the zipline course where – you guessed it – murky waters full of all kinds of yuckiness awaited me. The whole time instead of enjoying the view everyone gushed about, I screamed my lungs out. I’m sure the people in the gaga pit below where getting a kick out of it.
When I finally made it, by God’s grace, to the other side without finding myself dangling above the water, one of the women in our church asked, “wasn’t that fun?” I’m not sure what I said, but I’m sure if I was being honest, I probably said it was a bit scary, but I am glad I did it.
It was definitely an adventure that I never thought I’d do. For the duration of that day when I saw the zipline, I didn’t really see myself doing it. I was so afraid of so many things. Even if I ended up spinning around, which turned what was supposed to be a scenic ride into one of those rides you see at amusement parks that spin you around while you’re suspended in the air, I am glad I did it. I am glad I stepped out in faith, trusted God, and faced a fear I had for a long time. I probably wouldn’t do it again, honestly, but I’m sure if I did, I would be a bit more confident than I was the first time around.
What’s your craziest adventure? What would you have done if you were in my shoes?