Life is a Slippery Affair

Today I was thinking about Katia and Maurice Krafft.
They were French volcanologists whose work was documented by National Geographic.
They studied, explored, and filmed volcanoes. They were pioneers in the field. Respected. Experienced. Knowledgeable. Confident. Unafraid.
In 1991, they died together, caught in a pyroclastic flow on Mount Unzen in Japan.
Then, that made me think about Timothy Treadwell.
He devoted his life to studying grizzly bears,
lived among them for years and fought for their protection, right up until the day
they killed him.
So, that got me thinking about Moses, who led the children of Israel out of Egypt
and then, for forty years through the wilderness.
He spent so many hours with God, it transformed his appearance so that he had to wear a veil when he was around the people.
He and God were tight
but he disobeyed God and so, he was only allowed to see the Promised Land, not to enter it.
And that thought led me to meditate on a verse from I Corinthians 10 :12 that says: “So, if you think you are standing firm, be careful that you don’t fall!”
I think about that verse a lot because
life can be a slippery affair.
There are times that I feel holy and I own the righteousness that has been given to me, belongs to me, is assured to me, through Jesus Christ. I feel connected to the divine as if I’m being fed through a cosmic umbilical cord
but right on the heels of that feeling there come moments when I sense that I’m hurtling through the cosmos like a falling star or ejected angel flailing and grasping for a heavenly handhold, a hanging star, a life rope
and I know I’m tumbling of my own accord,
tripped over my own sin,
slipped on the banana peel of my fallen nature,
my big mouth, my selfish motive, my greedy, attention-seeking flesh.
But I land in the net of His mercy and gasping from the fall I recover to remember who I am, to remember that I have a new heart, to begin the climb again up the ladder of sanctification
until I spill holy oil on the rung and I’m sliding again like life is a game of chutes and ladders.
Part of this is just my fickle emotions and I know that
but there is real danger, too, because while I am redeemed and have a new heart, I’m not home yet and I still need Jesus like an oxygen mask dropped down to relieve the cabin pressure of this crashing plane we live on.
Sometimes I worry about the living with the sense that life is precarious, balancing like a tightrope walker crossing Niagra Falls, and spending every moment seeking direction and grace
but I think that at some point, Katia and Maurice forgot to respect the power of eruptions
and Timothy forgot to take into account the untamed nature of a bear’s appetite
and Moses thought that being God’s friend might just excuse a serious lapse in following a direct order.
My future is secured for all eternity by the blood of Jesus Christ
but for the present, I am still seeking light to make my way through a dark world.
The only solid ground is a day-by-day, moment-by-moment relationship with Jesus Christ.
He alone can protect me from the grizzly,
pull me from the lava flow,
and bring me all the way home
where I’m promised to land.

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    The Conversation

  1. Love these thoughts! Great post. ;)And Amen to this finally: The only solid ground is a day-by-day, moment-by-moment relationship with Jesus Christ.

  2. Ginny Jaques says:

    Once again, what you say is so appropriate for me. This morning I sat beside my husband on the couch,reading my Bible and thanking God for all he’s blessed me with, including a smart and caring husband. Then I went into the kitchen and found that my smart, caring husband had put all my favorite cereals on the kitchen table, in a deliberate demonstration that I was still (after all his whining) buying foods full of GMO ingredients, and I lost it! Stalked off to my room and slammed the door, just like the selfish adolescent I am still being after 60-some-odd years of supposed growth to adulthood. At this moment I’m trying to bring my adolescent emotions into line with the truth that I need to repent and apologize. I know I’m wasting God’s time being in a snit. Holy oil on ladder rung. Gets me every time.

  3. EXACTLY what I needed to hear this morning. Thank you, Lord, for the reminder to
    “Be on guard! Be alert! You do not know when that time will come.” Mark 13:33

  4. Lori,
    I was just thinking about Timothy Treadwell. Have you seen the movie Grizzly Man? It’s about Treadwell’s descent into mental illness. Instead of asking why the grizzlies attacked him, I wondered why the grizzlies put up with him so long. The biggest tragedy was the loss of the friend who was trying to help him, trying to coax him back to safety.
    Blessings on your blog, Lori!

  5. ByeGeorge says:

    Lori, thank you for sharing your gift….just beautiful thoughts…

  6. Beautiful! I needed this. Thanks!

  7. krex_1 says:

    this is so true, and seems to be more of an issue at this point in my life than it has been in the past. Is that part of what comes with age and experiene, the hubris of independence or self-sufficiency? I thank God for His mercy, and thank you for this reminder.