Thursday, September 13, 2007

When Riding High, Don't Forget to Look for Danger

Today a co-worker and I worked at a golf tournament. Each hole on the course was sponsored by various companies, most of whom decorated their tee box. My co-worker and I served as sponsor judges, which meant we spent the day riding around to all the tee boxes to decide which sponsors had done the best job decorating.

After we'd made our decisions, we rode out around the course again, this time to award the winners. There were five people on our golf cart (which was designed for just four), with the 5th person standing on the back of the cart and holding on for dear life as my co-worker drove us around.

We were riding down the cart path past some trees when all of a sudden, we heard a THWACK! We turned around to see our fearless standing passenger with blood streaming from his forehead, nose, cheek and ear. It turned out that he had been looking back and not paying attention to what was ahead, and what was ahead was a low-hanging limb on a pine tree. Thankfully, outside of some cuts and a bruised ego, he wasn't seriously hurt. But he definitely learned that he needed to pay more attention to his surroundings. Standing up, he had a great view of the course--but he didn't pay enough attention to the danger directly in front of him.

When we are riding high, spiritually speaking, it's easy to forget that danger can be lurking. In the valley times, I am quick to turn to God, seek His comfort and assurance, and walk closely with Him. But when I come out of the valley and move toward the mountaintop, I don't always maintain that closeness, nor do I always feel a deep need for God's protection.

I love the mountaintop experiences. I thank God for them, especially after spending time in the valley. But I don't want my alertness to potential danger, nor my dependence on God, to wane when I'm riding high.

How do you remind yourself that you need to depend on God at all times?