Saturday, April 28, 2012

Choose the Ladder

I've always loved playing Chutes & Ladders!  As a little girl, blossoming young mama, or hanging-in-there grandma, my competitive edge has emerged more than once.  I've really gotten into zipping up those big tall ladders, flying right past my opponents, and getting nearer to my goal of stepping onto that final golden square marked '100.' 

But along the way, my heart has dropped like a stone.  More than once.  My attitude has taken a sudden, negative lurch for the worse as I've encountered a bad spin or two, landed on a chute or three, and slid right on down a few rows ... or crash-landed back on square one right where I started from.

Life's like that.  We keep on moving ahead, one spin at a time.  Sometimes we get the big numbers and careen forward at breakneck speed, a big ol' confident smile on our faces, our hair flying in the wind. 

And then, often out of nowhere, things change drastically.  We begin to crawl forward oh-so-slowly, if at all. 

Or take a harrowing collision course way back down the hill, hoping against hope we don't completely crash and burn as things slide completely out of control.

Truth be told, you and I may have reached a pinnacle or two along the way.  And who hasn't hit bottom more than once? But whether we're climbing high with our heads in the clouds or sloshing around the dregs at the bottom, what matters is the perspective that we embrace.

Writer Sarah Young reflects, "If you encounter a problem with no immediate solution, your response to that situation will take you either up or down.  You can lash out at the difficulty, resenting it and feeling sorry for yourself.  This will take you down into a pit of self-pity.

Alternatively, the problem can be a ladder, enabling you to climb up and see your life from {God's} perspective.  Viewed from above, the obstacle that frustrated you is only a light and momentary trouble ..."

I don't know about you, but often it's just plain easier to throw up our hands, sit back, let life happen, and go nowhere.  Or head backwards, slowly but surely.  Hauling ourselves up the ladder takes focused energy and ongoing effort that we can't drum up without the gracious help from our Heavenly Father.  Yet, if we want to claim His rich, wise, eternity-in-view perspective, we have no other choice but to humble ourselves, get on our knees, and ask Him to lead the way.

I want to have my faith stretched.  I want to continue to climb on up there and see life from His vantage point.  I'm thankful 'cause He helps me when I ask Him to step on board and take my hand. 

And I so love His companionship along the way ...

- photo by Ben Husmann -


  1. And you know everyone eventually gets to the top. There is just no way to stay at the starting line. Yes many setbacks can occur, many advances, but in the end if you stick it out you get to the prize.

  2. When all is said and done, only God knows what He has in mind for each of us.

    Oh to keep our eyes on Him {steady, strong, faithful, wise}instead of ourselves {impulsive, weak, fickle, self-absorbed}.

    You KNOW I appreciate you weighing in!


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