I wrote this story in November of 2005. I was skiing with John, a great friend. We went at it again last Monday and I must say the results were the same. The skiing was really bad but the moment of freedom had never changed. It makes this story even more true. I also learned through the ministry I worked at, it's a great thing to give someone this same freedom.
I have added these verses for this story as so much has changed in my life over the past years.
10 Whatever happens, happens. Its destiny is fixed. You can't argue with fate.
11-12 The more words that are spoken, the more smoke there is in the air. And who is any better off? And who knows what's best for us as we live out our meager smoke-and-shadow lives? And who can tell any of us the next chapter of our lives?
Seventeen seconds of freedom. As you know I have not skied for several months now. Well yesterday was my day to get back in the water. I have realized that I am unable to write unless I have these seventeen seconds of release from the world. Sounds a bit crazy I know but think about it. We go thru life struggling, fighting, scrapping, clawing, climbing mountains. God tells us to be still but we still don’t listen half the time, we struggle to give God seventeen seconds sometimes.
As I got closer to the lake my heart was pounding as if it were my first time on the water. I pulled up and met John who I had not seen in several months, seems skiing has funny ways of developing relationships and keeping them. John said "suit up, your first". I threw on my rash guard and vest walked down that dock towards the idling boat. My heart pounding more than it ever had. I stepped into the ski hoping I had the set up close. I look down the course from the back of the boat, the sun was right off the horizon, took a deep breath. John sensed. I was ready and idled away from the dock. I eased into the water from the platform. Not remembering the last time I skied was months ago and the water was really warm, now it was really cold, but that did not bother me. I was just happy to be behind the boat again. The rope came tight and with smile I said "okay, ready". I was up heading for a passion that God has given me that few I believe in life get to experience. Went thru heading into the course routine, short check, glove check, bouncing a couple of times on the ski, you guys know the drill. I pulled out and headed into my seventeen seconds of freedom, how happy I was to here in this moment.
Blasting thru the gates heading towards one ball not even knowing if I knew how to turn, would the ski turn, will I fall, will the line be tight, already thinking about my offside turn, how will the ski work, is the set up close. All this going thru my mind but still so happy to be gliding across the water. How blessed am I to be doing this. Got to the other end and dropped ready to go through all this again. It is the seventeen seconds of freedom that I have missed over the past months. Not asking why I was not able to ski as this was Gods plan and I accept it for that.
Maybe it was to show me just how much these seventeen seconds mean to me, not to take time for granite. Maybe to show me that every second in life counts. What ever the reason, the seventeen seconds you are inside that course, many thoughts enter your mind and the best thing of all for me it has never been any thoughts of struggling, fighting, scrapping, clawing, climb mountains of this world but just what is going on for the moment. Seventeen seconds of freedom from the world. As I thought about this in the early hours of this morning I started to pray and then again realized that here was another freedom from the world, "casting all your cares on Him" a freedom that again I believe I have taken for granite. A freedom that only God can give. Thank you Jesus for prayer!