Rock climbers refer to the hike leading up to a climb as “the approach.” Ideally the approach is short- maybe only a few hundred feet – but it can also be several miles. The idea of hiking several miles uphill at altitude to then spend hours or days hauling yourself up the face of a cliff can be a foreign concept for the uninitiated but for climbers it’s usually a little less than pure bliss. One of my brothers is a skater. He jumps, flips and slides into concrete several times a day but he loves it. It seems like everyone has a preferred way of getting an adrenaline fix. Some people ride horses. Jockeys race around tracks going upwards of 40 mph with nothing but physics holding them in place. Others chase steers around an arena experiencing G-forces rivaling a fighter pilot. You’ve seen the images, everyone is aware of the dangers. So, why do people regularly dance with death for fun? Well it’s exciting! The question is: why is boredom or monotony so universally suffocating? There is something in the human psyche that craves a battle. Sociologists talk about the hierarchy of humans’ needs; water, shelter and the like and for most of us in the United States we are sitting comfortably at the top of this pyramid wondering why we exist in the first place and for what purpose. Which is why we then see many of these philosophers out there climbing and crashing and riding themselves into glory or into hospitals, always aiming for some sense of existential satisfaction.
Lone Tree tries to harness this inner desire for battle, for the feeling that every move you make matters. No matter our age we all crave excitement. Very often this desire for excitement can be misplaced or misdirected. We want entertainment. We want to be shaken out of our routine, but only a little bit, and then we just want everything to go back to our comfy, cozy, normal lives. The world is full of stories about adventure but possibly the greatest adventure book ever written is the Bible; filled with unending stories of violence and compassion, of the underdog winning, and of servants becoming kings. The greatest adventures ever lived have been by people who chose to link their life to that of something or someone greater than themselves, and to never let go. As children we are taught that God’s ways are not like the ways of Man, what could be more exhilarating and truly meaningful than a life spent following the Creator of the universe? The only way to find true contentment is to pursue a life seeking the will of our Heavenly Father; he will both challenge us beyond what we could expect and he will also be right there with us whether on the mountaintop like Moses, or the lion’s den like Daniel.
But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well. Matthew 6:33 NIV
The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full. John 10:10 NIV