My dear Danielle is so much more of a daredevil than I am. She’s the skydiving, dirt bike racing, spooky forest, adrenaline junkie; and I’m super jealous. She somehow tricked me onto the “Fury 325,” which is a fitting name for Carowinds’ roller coaster, one that is called a giga coaster and the fifth tallest, seventh fastest, and fourth longest roller coaster in the world. Yes, I had to look all of that up, and I hope it lets you know how terrified I was to get on this. I figured I could chicken out, but her dad was there, and of course I had to show I was a brave guy for his daughter. I remember feeling so sick as we waited in line, and I said, I’ll be fine as long as I’m not in the front row. We then got the front row. I remember the hot sun beating down on me, and Danielle yelling, “look it’s Charlotte!” I turned my head and saw the entire city of Charlotte, North Carolina. I then remember the coaster being a jerk and stopping for a little bit at the peak, then we dropped. I thought my skin was going to peel off of my face, certain that even though I have never had a bad heart, that it would then burst out of my chest.
As I am writing this, I’m getting sweaty hands just thinking about it all, but, I did in fact live. We then rode it two more times.
I had a lot of trust in the design of the coaster, I mean who had to test that thing first, no thank you.
I love that experience. It’s fun to look back at how scared I was, and then was able to take a literal step of faith onto that coaster. I trusted that I would not die, I trusted Danielle wouldn’t make fun of me if I peed my pants, and I trusted that I would have fun (once I was back on the ground).
I think there are moments in our journey that have a similar level of trust. We change jobs, move, start a relationship; entering any new season requires a ton of trust. We have to trust people in our lives but more importantly, we have to trust that God is moving us into a new, better place.
We have to trust, even when it’s hard.
Now the thing about trust, is that it’s an ongoing process. It’s an action verb. We have to actively choose to trust God in every season. We have to be like Indiana Jones in “The Last Crusade,” there’s a moment where the hero has to step into what appears to be thin air, but is able to walk across an invisible bridge. It’s a cool moment I think about a lot when it comes to trusting God. It may look as if we are about to step into a terrifying place, not sure how we’ll survive, if we’ll make friends, or have enough money; but we have to trust that God does indeed have a plan in it.
We have to trust in the first step.
It can be big or small, but it’s simply a step. Trust is not easy, but we have to take a step. When dear Danielle and I decided to move, it was scary. I didn’t have a job lined up, we didn’t know what apartment to get, and we didn’t know anyone. So, we took steps, we found a place. I applied for like, a long time, then got a job. We decided to just reach out and accept any invitation to be around people. It was hard, but it all starts with a step. We both have anxiety, but we knew that we couldn’t rely on our own selves to take these steps. It requires trust to step into the blessings God is sending you into.
Moving away was terrifying, but moving away was one of the best things for us.
Sometimes we just have to take it step by step. Get in the line. Put on your lap bar. Scream and sweat on the journey. Then exit into a new phase.
We have to continue to trust, every time we enter a new season.
Moving into the land of theme parks, there are obviously a ton of rides. At Universal, there is a ride called, “The Incredible Hulk,” and of course we had to do it. Now, this ride is not a giga coaster, but it does go fast and twist you upside down. Easy, right? Well dear Danielle convinced me to jump in, and we got in line. I was fine, then the line started getting closer, and my little anxiety gremlin inside was creeping in. How could I be getting scared? I mean, I rode a giga coaster and survived, this is nothing in comparison. That’s the thing with trust, it’s hard, and it’s an ongoing process. You can survive a crazy season, then be faced with a different situation and still need to trust. Trusting God doesn’t get easier, you just have more evidence of his blessing by your story. We can look back and see, that was difficult, but God was there; he is still here for you. A Fantastic piece of scripture that captures this idea comes from Philippians 4:6-7.
It says this:
“Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.”
In every situation, trust, even when it’s hard. Every season, every unknown, every doubt we have about ourselves or this situation, actively trust.
This means prayer; talking to God and being open. No matter how hard or how unknown your path is, comes to God, he’s leading you into a blessing you don’t yet see.
I look at the blessings he has brought Danielle and I into. I don’t mean materially, but spiritually and relationally. We have grown in maturity, we have developed new skills, met new fantastic people, and chosen to trust even when it’s difficult to see the path. Already in this new year, this lesson has been thrown at me. I need to trust God, in all things, even when it’s hard. I am flawed and not superhuman, and while my first thought is that I can do it all, the truth is, I need a perfect God to lead me into where I am supposed to go next. One step at a time, trust, even when it’s hard.
About the Author: Joshua Thomas is a writer by day and superhero by night. When he’s not writing and crimefighting, you can find him reading a good book, sipping warm tea, taking pictures, or dreaming. The young writer doesn’t fully know what he’s doing, but is enjoying the journey of it all. You can tweet memes at him on Twitter @joshua_thomas__ or follow his hipster photos and Jack Kerouac musings on Instagram @joshua_thomas__