I was reading National Geographic, and staring at me from the page was Gerlinde Kaltenbrunner, a 42-year-old from Austria and “the first woman in history to summit all 14 of the world’s 8,000-plus-meter peaks without supplemental oxygen.”
Shall I mention that I was winded after climbing the three flights of stairs to my daughter’s dorm room last weekend?
Listen to what Gerlinde says, though, when asked why she climbs:
“I feel completely myself when I’m in the mountains with only the bare essentials. There’s a freedom in total concentration. Nothing else exists, only the climb.”
The writer of Hebrews urges us to “fix our eyes on Jesus.” (Hebrews 12:2 NIV) When we add that to Jesus’ statement that he sets people free (John 8:36 NIV), we prove Gerlinde correct.
There is freedom in total concentration.
I’m thinking about my Spanish class and laundry and paying bills and that load of stuff in my trunk that has needed to go to the recycling center for a few weeks. Not to mention the single mom I’m worried about and my friend in the hospital who was up all night.
Doesn’t it feel like there’s no time for fixing eyes on Jesus?
So much to do.
But knowing Jesus is the climb. He is where we’re going. To take eyes off of him is to become a slave to the flatland worries.
Even though it doesn’t seem possible to squeeze it in, will you join me in concentrating on Jesus for a bit longer today?