The Final Climb
“For everyone that uses milk is unskillful in the word of righteousness; for he is a babe.
But strong meat belongs to them that are of full age, even those who by reason of use have their senses exercised to discern both good and evil.” Hebrews 5:13-14 KJV
The last day on the mountain was reserved for advanced climbing, with the final test being the most challenging. It was a steep and difficult climb; only a few made the attempt. I was the last, and when I reached the summit, the sun was beginning to set. It was a glorious moment standing on that ridge, but I knew it would be short lived, because in less than thirty minutes, the sun would set, and the temperatures would plummet.
I hooked up the repelling ropes to my harness and asked the guide if they were threaded right. He just looked at me. Then he spoke.
“You should know how to do this by now,” he said.
“I know,” I replied, “but could you check them for me?”
“You should know how,” he said. And he just stood there, stone-faced.
He was right, I should have known; I’d been climbing all week, but it was so easy to turn to one of the guides and have them check out the harness. My mind was on climbing and the adventure of it all, not on the practical stuff. That was their job. But now, suddenly, I found myself feeling uncomfortable.
I looked over the edge of that ridge at how far I would fall if I messed up, then at my harness, then back to the guide.
“Could you please just look it over?” I asked, “I don’t want to get this wrong.”
It’s at this moment I came face to face with a very important truth. In this world, we are supposed to pay attention. God expects us to learn, to know, to be observant and get it right. If we don’t, it’s not His fault.
This is true in rock climbing, but it is also true spiritually in our Christian walk.
God wants us to grow up in Christ, to no longer be babes. He wants us to be wise as serpents but harmless as doves. He wants us to know the score, to have our senses exercised to discern both good and evil.
When I was rock climbing, I was fortunate to have guides to assist me. In my spiritual walk, I have been blessed to have pastors and strong Christians to aide in my growth. But there comes a time when we must become the strong ones and able to help others. We will never outgrow the need for one another; we are a family, the body of Christ, but we should grow up in Christ to the point that we are spiritually strong. We must become the mature ones to train the next generation.
“And I myself also am persuaded of you, my brethren, that ye also are full of goodness, filled with all knowledge, able also to admonish one another.” Romans 15:14
In His Service, Jerry