Adventure, God, Tethered: Clinging to Jesus, Trials

Tethered: Clinging to Jesus

Phase 2 silhouette

By +Jeanne Takenaka @JeanneTakenaka

A spirit of adventure claimed me on Saturday at our church’s women’s retreat.

I stepped into a blue harness, which was tightened around me almost to the point of pain. The guy working the ropes course handed me a yellow tether and told my friend and me to have fun.

Phase 1 ropes course

We waited on the beginning platform as another guide connected one caribiner from our tethers to our harnesses. He clipped the other end of the tether to a metal cable above our heads.

Excitement coursed through me as we side-stepped our way across the first of three challenges on the ropes course. We both slid our hands across the cable between us as we moved. We stopped for a moment on the mini-platform the ended the first phase of the course.

Phase 2 ropes course

The second phase of the course added an obstacle of ropes to step around. I took a deep breath and stepped over each knot. The second mini-platform trembled as my friend and I stepped onto it. Someone had just launched on the zipline.

The third phase of our course had nothing but cables beneath us and above us, with a few ropes hanging between us to grasp for balance. I clung to my tether and inched my way across open space with clouds and blue sky above and a long drop below. When I scooted to the end of the cable, I had a gap to cross before I could step onto the platform. I thought I had a grip on a hook so I could maneuver onto the platform.

Phase 3 ropes course

As I prepared to hoist myself onto the flooring, my feet slipped. My heart pounded and I clutched my tether—the only thing keeping me from dropping thirty feet. I attempted it again, and made it onto the platform, breaths coming fast. It all happened within a couple seconds, but it felt like minutes flew past before my feet knew the safety of firm ground.

The guy working the zipline portion of the course tethered us to the cables within the enclosed space. He clicked our carabiners to the tether for the final part of the course.

We sat at the edge of the platform, looked each other in the eye, and counted to three. Then, we launched.

The sheer drop of the zip line pulled an exuberant scream from my mouth before a smile replaced it. The jerk of the tether as I fell reminded me I was safe as I flew through the air for a few hundred feet. I liked it so much I did it two more times.

Zipline drop

Later that evening, we sang David Crowder’s, “I Am.”  It talks about holding onto Jesus in the middle of the storm.

I remembered how that yellow tether held me above the ground, kept me safe on a course that would have been suicide without it. At least for someone with my level my skill (or lack of).

When my feet slide across the cables of life, I will encounter storms. The cables are going to wobble beneath me. If I’m not tethered to something—Someone—I’m going to plunge to the ground.

Sometimes the only way I get through the storms is by clinging to the tether—Jesus.

Launch on zipline


Zipline no hands

Zipline distance

He’s the One who holds me up in the trials. When the cables of life’s circumstances falter beneath my feet, He’s the one who brings me to the other side. He’s strong enough to hold me when the winds of life threaten to topple me.

He’s the one who keeps me safe when my feet miss the solid platform.

Being tethered to Him doesn’t mean I’m spared walking through life’s storms. I may still be hurt by trials. But I can cling to Jesus and know He will bring me through the course of this life. I may face injury as I walk across the cables. He’s promised to bring me safe to the other side—the platform of heaven. 

What about you? What’s the most daring thing you’ve ever done? Where do you cling when the trials of life buffet you?

12 thoughts on “Tethered: Clinging to Jesus”

  1. The most daring things I’ve done were typically not of my choosing. Coming out on strings under a Huey, and being dragged through the tops of a couple of palm trees is probably up there. But fortunately the guys shooting at me were pretty inept. They didn’t hit me, and only hit the helicopter a few times.

    Embedded palm spikes still surface from my skin, every so often.

    But the most daring thing I did by choice was proposing marriage to a woman I’d physically met for the first time five hours before (after about a month of phone calls, emails, and letters).


    1. Andrew, I knew you would have some daring things on your resumé. 🙂 But I agree with you. Sometimes the most daring things we do peel ourselves wide open before another. Being vulnerable can be far more daring than any physical act of bravery.


  2. Thanks for sharing your daring adventure! It sounds wonderful! A zip line through the Amazon is on my bucket list. . .
    Can’t come up with the ‘most daring’ thing. Life for me has been a series of darings. Saying “yes” to a man I’d met two weeks before was one biggie. 3 kids and 48 years later~ it was a good dare. Giving my life to Jesus and building that relationship has been so good, that other dares (backed by Him) don’t seem like dares. Having Him as my tether does help keep life on an even keel. But I like adventures too, There just has to be a tether attached. LOL!


    1. Yes, Mom. You are an adventurer at heart. 🙂 You’ve faced some daring times in your life. It was pretty brave to say, “Yes” after two weeks! But, I’m awfully glad you did. 😉

      When Jesus asks us to do scary things, it feels daring for a time. But knowing He’s with us makes it easier. 🙂


  3. I dared to travel the world on my own. I’ve gone to Europe a few times, China, Tahiti, Israel, Australia, not knowing a soul. But now I have several good friends I keep in touch with, including one who translated French phrases for one of my writing projects.


Comments are closed.