Cold and shivering—and bereft of any sense of accomplishment—I stood at the top of Mount Everest. The ski instructor called it the bunny hill, but I knew better. The icy slope in front of me could only lead to one thing. A painless death was out of the question, so I gripped my ski poles and prayed I’d be lovingly remembered. I took one last, shaky breath. It was all the encouragement my skis needed. One minute I was awaiting my demise, the next rushing toward it at breakneck speed. My skis traveled in opposite directions. My poles flew through the air. I didn’t mind. Better a snowball than a javelin. In the moments that followed, I became a firm believer that what must go down should never come back up.
I still have times when I feel as though I’m standing at the top of a mountain—figurative, of course—and wonder how I’m going to make it down. I see the slippery slope, and my mind pleads for escape. I can’t stay where I am—I know that—but the only way down looks like a scary one. Sometimes the situation involves facing an illness, or a problem with a family member or friend. At times my life takes me in a new direction, one that holds uncertainty.
Fear is a powerful emotion. Do I succumb to it and lay helpless in the snow, or do I get up and ski? Those moments of fear are inevitable, but we don’t have to let them rule us. When Jesus died on the cross, He conquered death and fear. With His help, we can take up our ski poles and glide—or tumble, if need be—our way to victory.