Previous Challenge Entry (Level 3 - Advanced)
Topic: The Game of Life (09/11/08)
TITLE: Hinds' Feet
By Kenneth Heath
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With a heavy sigh Simon seated himself on a rock near the waterfall. Perched high above the valley he looked down on the lush African panorama below. The sun had reached its zenith, and he could feel its warm glow drying out his sweat-soaked shirt. Oh how good it was, just to be able to come away from the maddening crowds and chill. The climb had not been easy at his age and a smile crossed his wrinkled brow as he remembered how as a youngster, he had been able to run up the mountain to this very spot. Oh, how he longed to be young and energetic once more. No-one had told him that life would be so hard and yet so rewarding.
As the sunrays warmed his body, they brought with them renewed energy. Chuckling he thought of an old eagle sunning itself on a rocky crag high in the mountains. “I must look like that,” he said thinking out aloud, “ and yet I am only 52, but life has taken its toll on me.” Is life really a game? Any one who has played a team sport would beg to differ. In most games there is a referee who controls the play and sees to it that everyone stays within the rules and if so then the best team or player must win.
In life we are individual players faced with two sets of rules, the world system and Gods’. To make it more complicated, He has given us free will to choose how we play and as our referee, He decides the outcome and consequences of our actions. Many a time His decisions not only confounded, but also frustrated us. With all its twists and turns however, Simon had realized that life is not a game, but a journey, a very hard journey.
There is nothing more frustrating than being blown up by the referees whistle when you are on top of your game. Just when things are going well a setback arises, not one setback but two or three or four. Truthfully, as he reviewed his life thus far it would seem that for every two steps forward, he took ten steps back. God calls them learning curves designed to build character and equip us for Heaven.
One forgets that as ‘Baby Christians’ we all tend to run ahead of our parents, often stumbling and falling, as we explore this wondrous new life we have been given. Fortunately, our parents are on hand to pick us up, clean our wounds and wipe away our tears when we fall. As he grew older, Simon learnt that life was not fair, that people he trusted would let him down and that to walk the path of life to Gods’ high places requires “Hinds feet”. These are the feet of the deer that live high in the mountains, where in order to climb to the high places, they have to place their back feet precisely in the footsteps of their front feet. One misplaced step could result in a terrible fall into the abyss below.
No, life is not a game, it is more like a roller coaster ride where your upward motion is suddenly cut short, and you are sent plummeting to the depths below, then onwards around a sharp learning curve where you gather momentum before shooting skywards, where another experience sends you into an upside down spiral where the “G” forces squeeze you back into your seat, before dropping you to the floor below and into a dark tunnel of despair before emerging at the far end only to be shot skywards once more.
The crisp mountain air had refreshed him, and he took a drink from the cold stream before he turned and made his way down to the valley below. This brief respite was all he needed, time away from the hustle and bustle of everyday life. Jesus Himself, had to get away from the crowds and spend time with His Father before He could get back into the thick of things. We also need that special time away so that when we return, we can face the challenges of life. “Life is a journey, enjoy the ride,” never forgetting that you never walk it alone.
“The Lord God is my strength, and He will make my feet like hinds’ feet, and He will make me to walk upon mine high places.” Hab 3:19.
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