Friday, June 25, 2010

Abiding In Christ

My arms felt like they were made of silly putty as I looked at the task before me. This was going to be impossible. I had been working all afternoon making upgrades and changes to our Low Ropes Course, and I was exhausted. The final part of the process was moving our three trust fall poles to a new, more suitable location. Now I had hit a snag.

The trust fall activity is made from three sections of telephone poles which are mounted in the ground at different heights. I had already dug up the four-foot pole, dragged it to the new location, dug a fresh hole, and dropped it into place. I was surprised, but glad, to see that it fit perfectly into the hole on the first try.

Next was the five-foot pole. When I dug it up, I found that it had been cemented into place, so I dug up all of the attached cement along with the pole. I didn’t have the strength to drag it to the new location, so I had to roll it. Once I got it there, I dug a hole for the pole, trying to account for the size of the cement as well. It wasn’t until then that I really contemplated how I was going to lift the pole into place. It was this task which now mocked me as I stood in the woods that day.

As I bent over to pick up the pole with my rubbery arms, I spoke to God out loud. “Lord, I’m going to need your help with this one,” I prayed. Before I could even get my hands on the pole, I felt such a strong response from God that I stopped right where I was and cracked up laughing. The Lord said, “Oh, did you think you did that last one by yourself?” I realized then that the reason the first pole had gone so well was because He was helping me. And I knew that it didn’t matter how much heavier the next pole was because the Lord could handle that one too. After acknowledging His presence in this way, I stood up the five-foot pole, lifted it into position, and dropped it into the hole. It fit perfectly.

In John 15, Jesus says, “Apart from me, you can do nothing.” This passage is all about abiding in Him. We know in our hearts that Jesus is always with us, but all too often we neglect his presence. We try to do things apart from Him, so we are doomed to failure. When we learn to abide in Christ we realize that he is always with us, helping us in everything that we do.

One thing that people seem to like the most about coming to South Mountain Christian Camp is that they are able to sense God’s presence when they are here. Apart from the distractions of the world, they are able to refocus and learn to abide in Him. A big part of the ministry of SMCC is to make these facilities available for that very purpose.