The older I get, the more difficult it is for me to really enjoy a good roller coaster. Oh, I still WANT to enjoy them. But it’s getting more difficult.
The ups, the downs, the twists, the jerky turns, the feelings of anti-gravity. You can ride the same ride a thousand times and still be surprised by the next movement.
I grew up going to a theme park called “Carowinds” – where I cut my teeth on the Scooby Doo roller coaster. And can still remember the feeling of absolute panic at the words, “the lightening strikes NOW” as the White Lightening roller coaster shot towards the big loop. My favorite coaster there was the Cyclone (okay, there is a good possibility that none of these coasters are still there – it’s been at least 20 years since I’ve been there!). Imagine yourself harnessed in, going around a small turn, and then facing the excruciating climb up, up, up.
Clink, clink, clink.
Anticipation, nervousness, fear, excitement.
You reach the top and take a deep breath.
There is going to be a lot of screaming.
Up, down, around, CORKSCREW!
And then you are back with a look on your face like “What just happened to me?!” I always remember laughing, but also bewildered and out of breath. THAT was fun!
I can’t figure out where I am on that ride right now. I feel like I’m at the front of the train and at the back at the same time. Experiencing the rush and just living in the moment. While also anticipating, and quite frankly nervous about the upcoming hill.
One of the great things about hope is that you can imagine the end of the roller coaster. Imagine the laughter as you pull into the gate. Imagine the feeling of “what the heck just happened to me?”
And one of the great things about faith is the harness of Christ holding on to you.
Holy, holy, holy is the Lord God Almighty. Who was – and is – and is to come.
He was there at the beginning of the ride.
He is with you and me right now.
And he will be there, in the middle of the corkscrew or loop. . . and beyond.
There may be a lot of screaming along the way . . . but I’m going to try to enjoy this ride!