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Grab the Rope

Imagine yourself in a little row boat. You are floating along, enjoying the sun on your skin and the cool water as you drag your fingertips over the surface of the water. It’s picture-perfect. Then, the hair on the back of your neck prickles to attention. At first, you aren’t certain what it is, then you hear it. Splashing. Just ahead, the river drops a foot--a tiny waterfall. You grip the ores and try to steer yourself down the little drop smoothly. The front of the boat hangs for a moment, then you splash noisily down, the boat rocks, but you are fine. A smile spread across your face as you wipe the river water from your eyes. “Phew!” That was fun!

Ahead, a few more rapids. Feeling fairly confident in your river rapids skills, you straighten in your seat, steel your nerves, and forge on. Splishing-Splashing down bump after bump and dip after dip, you knock into a few rocks, feel the sting of the impact, but the river settles out and you are okay. The boat is dented but not cracked. The adrenaline rush makes you laugh nervously. You are good at this!


ur little boat is quite the river-rafting craft. And look at you! Captain of the River and Master of the Rapids! The little voice in your head, the one who knows all and can do all, says, “We got this. Bring it!”

And so it comes.

The splashing chimes of the minor rapids you just survived is growing into a churning roar. You look to the horizon to where the river drops from sight. You don’t know how far it falls. Maybe this is Tahquamenon Falls and the worst that could happen is you get wet when you fall out of the boat.

The river drifts faster as the end nears. Maybe this is Niagara Falls and there are people all around the edge who are ready with their cameras to forever document your plummet. Maybe this is Victoria Falls, the waterfall so high, even the water droplets have time to evaporate before they reach the bottom.

You look around for help when you see him standing there on the shore holding a long rope. God. He’s just waiting for you to pray to Him. “Help! Help me!” your voice cracks in fear, barely audible over the rush of water about to pull you to your doom. God starts to swing the rope like a cowboy, but you look at the distance between you and him and believe it’s too late. He throws the rope and the end of it lands perfectly in the boat, but you don’t take it. “Help me grab it!” you cry as the edge draws closer.

Life is like that. We manage well the little bumps of life. We even storm some rough waters successfully and think we can do all things. Then the moment comes when you know that without help, you will not survive. Your marriage will not survive. Your friendship. Your health. For the love of God, grab the rope!

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