Monday, March 12, 2012

Roller Skating Through Life ~ Life lessons learned while roller skating

Yesterday was a great event in the lives of my girls ~ their first experience in roller skates.  Maybe you remember the first time you went roller skating.  The excitement at this fun new activity, the careful "walking" on wheels and that first feeling of your feet slipping out from under you as you take a seat on the hard floor of the skating rink.  That was our experience last night.  The girls were so excited at the prospect of joining their friends at the rink to spend their evening skating.  They could hardly believe the time had finely come for them to get to try skating.

Throughout the evening, as I skated in circles with them I was struck by the life lessons present in a skating rink.
Have you heard the term "skating through life"?  It took on a new meaning for me as I watched my poor girls fall and get up and fall again.  Skating through life is not always easy and at times it's painful and downright dangerous.  We began slowly, the girls clinging to me and the wall in order to stay on their feet.  Whey they fell I helped them up and said "Let's try again."  Just when they thought they had it and loosened their grip on me, that was when they fell, and great was their fall!  Sitting on the floor of the rink, they looked up at me, tears streaming down their face, fear in their hearts at the prospect of getting up and getting hurt again and crying out "Mommy, I can't do this!"  What a picture of our lives with Christ!  We begin slowly, clinging to Him, knowing how greatly we need Him and that there is the possibility of falling at any moment.  But over time we gain confidence, think we can do it on our own and we loosen our grip.  Sure enough, it's not long before we fall and cry up at our Father "I can't do this."  The only difference between roller skating and walking with Christ is that it is our goal  to one day have the girls gain that confidence and skill to skate off on their own while in our spiritual walk may we always cling tightly to Christ, keenly aware that we can't do it on our own!

After such a fall I helped my girls up, encouraging them that we were going to try again.  Looking into their face, talking closely to them so they could hear me over the music in the rink, I said "Let's try again, I'm with you, I'll hold you up."  Once again I was reminded of the spiritual lesson of the skating rink.  When we fall in our sin and cry out to our Father, He doesn't just leave us there to figure it our for ourselves or to cry out to one who doesn't hear.  He picks us up and gently, lovingly promises to be with us and hold us up.  I was reminded of Psalm 94:17-18 ~ If the Lord had not been my help, my soul would soon have dwelt in the abode of silence.  If I should say, "My foot has slipped," Your lovingkindness, O Lord, will hold me up.

One last roller skating lesson I learned last night occurred as Isabel and I rounded a corner.  Trying to control her feet, that were rolling away from her, they rolled directly in front of my skates, tripping us both up.  There we were, piled up on the floor as others attempted to skate around us and not fall over us.  This reminded me of the great influence and effect we have on one another.  Our own sin can trip up others and have effects on those who are coming behind.  Suddenly the sin of one saint causes a pile up of stumblers behind him.  This is why we so desperately need to hold tight to Christ as we skate through life!