Why a Steady Gaze Yields Steady Feet

Fears reveal our perceived vulnerabilities.
For as long as I can remember, heights became a catalyst for a racing heart and anxious mind. It took me years to begin challenging myself to conquer my fear. For by doing so, the confidence gained carried implications to other areas of my life.
One such venue of empowerment occurred through High Ropes course elements at various camps in which my family vacationed. Ironically, my husband embraces these risk taking activities. In fact, he led groups as a paid facilitator for several summers. My kids, clamor to strap on the gear and head on up. Me? Not so much.
But, this time I refused to settle. Especially in front of my kids.
So up I climbed; helmet strapped on, baleigh secured. My gaze fixed in front of me. Feet steady. Steps taken carefully as I slowly lift up one foot and struggle to maintain balance on wobbly legs as I plant my foot in front of the other. As I complete a few steps, I marvel at my progress.
But then my eyes gaze downward. A streak of fear hit my heart. I felt paralyzed despite my body swaying to keep me steady. The distance to the ground appears daunting. Despite encouragement from the crowd, my mind becomes paralyzed but my feet lose their grip. I am dangling.
Yet I am secure.
You see, the rope attached to my belay is also hooked into a track above me. I knew it but the carabiner lies out of my vision. What I can’t see makes trust difficult.
Eventually, I planted my feet back on the beam and steadily made my way to the shortest exit route.
Though I didn’t make it to the end, I left knowing I faced my fear and caught a glimpse of God’s interaction in our lives in the process.
When our gaze becomes focused on our fear rather than the Sustainer who has our back, we find ourselves in an unsteady place.
But He has not moved. And despite any earthly consequences, we are still attached and given the opportunity again to plant our feet.
You cleared the ground under me so my footing was firm. Psalm 18:33 (The Message)
What’s keeping you from walking steady?
This post is written for the Five minute Minute Friday Community. Come join us! http://fiveminutefriday.com/linkup/
Disclaimer: I may have gone a bit over the five minutes 🙂

7 thoughts on “Why a Steady Gaze Yields Steady Feet

  1. E. Adams Wright

    “Though I didn’t make it to the end, I left knowing I faced my fear and caught a glimpse of God’s interaction in our lives in the process.” Thanks for sharing your experience, Stephanie. I appreciate how our Father continues to reveal Himself to us in the events of our lives. Blessings.

  2. Jeannie Prinsen

    This is such a good picture of having faith in what we can’t see. I applaud you for this because I think I would be terrified! Thanks for writing this and congratulations on facing your fear.

  3. Jeanne Takenaka

    Stephanie, good for you!!!! The first time I tried a ropes course was at a women’s retreat in the mountains a few years ago. We had to walk through the ropes course, and the only way down at the end was via a zipline. The scariest part for me was sitting on the very edge of that tower and looking down some 30-40 feet to the ground. once I plunged, I was hooked (literally) on the experience, but before then? It scared me. I love your example of God making your feet steady as you chose to move forward in spite of your fear. And you’re right, when we keep our eyes on our God, who doesn’t move, we can be courageous in confidence. 🙂 Good for you, friend!


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