From July 16, 2008:
"Okay, I've put up a few posts on Vermont (as duly noted by Ben). We also went jumping. (Note the outstanding farmer's tan.) True confession: I was very scared about this jump. (This is not a confession for those bystanders who witnessed this jump.) Why was I scared? The rock wall slopes away from the jump site toward the water. Consequently, I could see the wall below me and was scared that I would not jump out past the wall and into the swimming hole. I envisioned myself sliding painfully down the rock wall and to the bottom of the swimming hole never to jump - or for that matter, do much else - again. My knees were shaking. Each time I tried to take the plunge, I would get right to the edge and then... step back. Finally, after some patience and encouragement from Jim and Ben (Hey guys, can you do that again? I just want to watch - and make sure that you survive one more time), I jumped. Wow, that was a great feeling. I ended up doing it again. Later, I started thinking about my life. To often, I get scared - scared of rejection, scared of failure. The easiest and safest option is to back away and avoid the pain. Instead of diving in, I often try to hedge my position a little bit - try to provide some safety. This time, I jumped."
Fast forward to June 16, 2010:
While in Riviera Maya, Jenn and I went on two excursions. On the first excursion, we took a step back in time and wandered the Mayan ruins. At the end of the excursion, we stopped at a cenote to do some jumping (top photo). My thoughts immediately went back to those jumps in Vermont (middle photo). However, this time, rather than fear, exhilaration pervaded my body, my soul. What was the difference? Well, I knew - I believed - that it was going to be okay to jump. The beautiful thing about this story is that this time Jenn and I were on a trip together and... she jumped. I asked her about this later and she said that she would have never jumped if we weren't there together.
Perhaps this is kind of what Paul referred to in Romans when he wrote, "that is, that you and I may be mutually encouraged by each other's faith" (1:12). We can't get too far on this journey of life alone. Yet, together, by trusting in God, we can mutually encourage each other to take those plunges!