Up, Up, and—! On Second Thought …




Today is Mike’s big day—the day he’s looked forward to all his life. Today his dad is turning the family’s balloon ride business over to him.

And Mike’s ready. He’s worked in the company all his life, starting with picking up after the tourists as a kid. He majored in business at college. He knows all the science involved in flying hot air balloons. He’s fully prepared.

Except for one thing: he’s never actually flown a balloon. It’s his last test before taking over the business.

No big deal. With all that knowledge on his side, how hard can it be?

Mike confidently climbs into the gondola with his dad. He prepares the burner and goes through his final checklist. All set.

With a smile and a wave for his friends and family, he disengages the first of four lines anchoring the gondola to the ground. Then he throws off the second. The third. The gondola’s bucking now, eager to be set free, to soar through the sky.

But Mike’s hand hovers over the last line, frozen by doubt—by fear. And these aren’t irrational fears, either—gravity’s a powerful force. What’s more, he’s grown up around balloons—he’s seen a few accidents. What if something goes wrong?

“Come on, son!” Dad calls. “Flying’s wonderful! We’ll explore the heavens! Throw off that line holding you to the world!”

Here we end this parable. If that bothers you—if you want to know how the story ends—then take heart, because you control the conclusion.

You’re Mike. And your Heavenly Father’s calling, “Come on, son! Come on, daughter! Come fly with Me—we’ll explore the heavens! Just throw off that line holding you to the world!”

You probably already know what that line is. If not, ask, and God will tell you—just as He told the rich young ruler which particular sin robbed him of the freedom Christ offered (Matthew 19:16-22). Then step past your doubts and over your fears to let it go.

Drop that line—and fly!

Let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles. And let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us, fixing our eyes on Jesus” (Hebrews 12:1-2, NIV).

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