My An Arkie's Faith column from the March 2, 2016 issue of The Mena Star.
When they were young my children enjoyed the Winnie the Pooh movies. I’m pretty sure that they still do. One of their favorites was Winnie the Pooh and the Blustery Day.
The movie begins with Winnie the Pooh on his way to his thoughtful spot. It is a very windy day. While Pooh is thinking, Gopher shows up and tells Pooh that he needs to leave because it is "Winds-day.” Pooh, doesn’t understand the warning, but goes through the Hundred Acre Wood wishing everyone a happy Winds-day. Pooh first visits his friend Piglet who lives in a beech tree. Piglet had gone outside to rake leaves but the wind was too strong. Piglet is almost blown away but Pooh grabs on to him by his scarf, like a kite on a string. Pooh hangs on to the scarf as Piglet is blown away. They go past Kanga and Roo, and Pooh wishes them both a happy Winds-day. Pooh ends up destroying Eeyore’s house as he struggles to hang on to Piglet in the heavy wind and is drug through the house. When the wind carries Piglet over Rabbit’s garden, Pooh inadvertently harvests the carrots as he is drug by.
The howling wind finally blows Pooh and Piglet over to Owl's tree house. Owl invites them in. Pooh wishes Owl a happy Winds-day, but Owl tells him that the wind is due to "a mild spring zephyr" and not because it is Winds-day.
A few weeks ago there was a day that I’m pretty sure was a Winds-day. At the very least it was a mild spring zephyr. The wind blew strong all day. It came from the north and had a sharp bite to it. The wind was so strong that our old shop building where my business is located creaked and groaned. As the day progressed some of the sheet metal on the roof became loose and started banging and making a horrible noise.
My Dad climbed up on a ladder to fasten the sheet metal. The ladder wasn’t on firm ground and it slipped. My Dad fell from the ladder and as he fell grabbed at the sheet metal, slicing his hand open. He wasn’t badly injured from the fall but he had to go to the doctor to have his hand sewed up. I feel very fortunate that he wasn’t hurt worse. If only I had been there to steady the ladder he wouldn’t have fallen.
In our spiritual lives God has promised to keep us from falling. The Psalmist wrote in Psalms 116:8 (NKJV), “For You have delivered my soul from death, my eyes from tears, and my feet from falling.” If we ask God to steady the ladder of our life we can trust Him to keep us from falling. In fact He is the only one who can keep us from falling. In Jude 24 (CEV) the Bible tells us that “only God can keep you from falling and make you pure and joyful in his glorious presence."
Charles Blondin is considered to be one of the greatest tightrope-walkers of all time. He was the first man ever to cross Niagara Falls by tightrope. In 1860 the Prince of Wales saw Blondin cross the Niagara Falls tightrope on stilts, and again blindfolded. After that Blondin stopped halfway across and cooked and ate an omelet. Next he wheeled a wheelbarrow from one side to the other, and returned with a sack of potatoes in it. Then Blondin approached the Prince of Wales and asked, "Do you believe I could take a man across the tightrope in this wheelbarrow?" "Yes, I do", said the Prince. "Hop in", replied Blondin. The Prince declined Blondin's challenge. He might have believed Blondin could do it, but he wasn't about to trust him with his life.
When it comes to our relationship with God, this kind of trust doesn't do much good. God doesn't want us to say "Lord I believe in you, but not enough to put my life in your hands." Belief has to come with trust. Proverbs 3:5,6 (NLT) tells us to “trust in the Lord with all your heart; do not depend on your own understanding. Seek His will in all you do, and He will show you which path to take.
The Prince of Wales believed that Blondin could walk a man across the tightrope in a wheelbarrow, but he didn't trust him enough to get in. Do you believe in God? Do you trust him with your life?
Gentle Reader, trust God with all your heart, and if he asks you to get in the wheelbarrow, do it! Only God can keep you from falling. But for Him to be able to keep you from falling you have to put your trust in Him. You can’t depend on our own understanding. “There is a way that seems right to a man, but its end is the way of death.” Proverbs 14:12 (NKJV)