I took a trip to South Point last week. My son in law Dave took me out so that we could see the southernmost tip of the United States. It was pretty cool. After we walked to to the ocean we turned and went up the coast a few hundred meters. Gradually the land rose and we found ourselves on a cliff about 30 feet above the ocean.

I got to thinking about how often the beauty of life can be surrounded by danger. The higher up we go, the better the view can be. Here I was surrounded by rugged land, beautiful water, gorgeous plants and flowers galore, and what was my purpose here? To jump. Are you like that too? Nothing is ever enough? Well the view from that cliff just wasn’t enough to look at, so we jumped! Thirty feet of free fall was followed by a hard splash into the ocean. My arms stung a bit because I left them out when I entered. Now the rush of the jump was gone and all I could think was “Shark!”. I had no reason to think this other than paranoia built out of a lifetime living with Jaws in the back of my mind. So I swam like crazy to get to the ladder.

Here was my source of rescue – a rusty ladder, the rungs wrapped in duct tape, hanging from two bolts at the top of the cliff. The bolts made it swing in and out with the waves. It didn’t look safe, and I wasn’t sure that I wanted to be on it, but I did know that I wanted to get out of that water.

I guess what I’m trying to say is that sometimes I do things that seem like a good idea. Sometimes I go places that look pleasing but turn out scary. Sometimes the way out of danger doesn’t seem like fun. But that ladder was like my recovery, I had to work hard and it was uncomfortable and even a bit scary, but it let me…

–Rise Up

2 thoughts on “Cliffs

  1. What a great analogy, Paul! I love how you seem to always be looking for parallels to draw between everyday life and your recovery! My name is Pete and I’m a leader at the Celebrate Recovery at my church in Dothan, AL. I love seeing your lessons online as they help me to prepare to teach at our CR. I noticed that there isn’t a video online for lesson 21 (relapse). I was hoping to get in touch with you to see if he had a video or audio recording you’d would be willing to share, or just to pick your brain as a fellow CR-head! Thanks so much, and God bless!


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