Beads of sweat fall off my skin and onto the ground. With each step the sand pulls me down, leaving me only inches closer. My muscles are screaming at me as I struggle to pull my hands and feet free. I feel like collapsing, but I have not even reached the halfway mark of this four hundred fifty foot dune. Will I ever reach the top?
It would be much easier to stop climbing and experience the thrill of running back down to the shore. I want to feel the waves lap around my feet again. Why do I need to reach the summit when I can stay on the ground safely and easily?
As I stand up to breathe and take this all in, I feel the breath of Heaven kiss my skin. A small breeze that cools my face and entices me to reach the goal. Even though the end is out of my sight, there is a crowd awaiting my arrival and ready to celebrate with those who fought and were victorious.
I have to keep climbing. I may never reach the top, but unless I stop there is always hope.
It may seem nice to stay on the ground because it is easy and what I know, but until I try to reach the sky, I will never experience the thrill to fly.
This little story of my climb up a sand dune may seem like a purely physical journey, but I realized it is deeply connected to our spiritual journey.
Countless times throughout our struggle to reach Heaven, we feel the temptation to give up. It would be much easier to ground ourselves in the things of this world instead of reaching for Heavenly goals. However, if we give in to this temptation we will never experience the reward of reaching the top where eternal rest and joy awaits us.
I know it is hard.
I know we can’t always keep a steady pace without falling back.
I know we fall often and most of the time we have to crawl to barely stay alive.
Nevertheless, I also know we will reach the end if we keep moving and focusing on what is above us. The Holy Spirit breathes around us and will fill us with strength.
When I reached the top of the dune the feeling of joy and accomplishment was overwhelming. All the pain I experienced seconds before quickly faded away and no longer took up the forefront of my mind. I was immensely grateful I endured the pain to reach this point and bask in the feeling of completion and joy.
When we reach Heaven, the inexplicable joy we’ll feel will hardly be a match to the suffering it took to receive it. All the sufferings you are going through now will fade away and you will have joy for eternity.
I encourage you to Keep Climbing. “You ask, ‘What if I fall?’ Oh, but my darling what if you fly?” (Erin Hanson) Yet you will never know until you try. 🙂