Life Lesson Learned Through Wheelchair Skiing

skiingI don’t necessarily like to read instructions, but you know what, there are times when it sure would be nice to receive instructions. There was one time in particular when instructions would have been very helpful for me.

The first time I ever went snow skiing was right after I got my masters. About 7 of my friends and I decided to celebrate by snow skiing at Winter Park, because they’re known for wheelchair skiing. They asked me if I wanted to ski by myself or have an instructor. Well, I’d never been skiing in my life, so I asked for an instructor.

The very first time we went up the slope, I knew this was going to be beyond me, and I knew I had no idea what I was getting myself into. My instructor tied himself to my ski sled, and then said “Okay Todd, go.”

So without instructions, I started skiing down this hill. My only experience with snow skiing was watching speed skiing on the Olympics where they go straight down the hill. So there I was, going straight down this hill, gaining speed every second. The wind was smashing into my face and my face felt like it was lagging behind me as I sped down this hill constantly picking up speed.

Suddenly, I saw a tree in front of me. A big tree. I knew I was going faster and faster and was about to slam into this tree. As if having Cerebral Palsy and being in a wheelchair wasn’t enough, I was about to have some serious issues after smashing into a tree at this speed. I was helpless and weak, and my only hope was the instructor behind me with that rope. All of the sudden I felt myself stop as the instructor pulled the rope 10 feet in front of the tree. He said “Todd, you’re supposed to take very wide turns to slow down! The straighter you ski the faster you go.” Now you tell me!

I had to totally depend on that instructor in my weakness. If it wasn’t for him, I would have slammed into the tree, and if it wasn’t for him, I also wouldn’t have been able to ski in the first place. If I hadn’t let myself be weak in order to try something new, I wouldn’t have been able to experience the next 3 days of skiing down mountains and having the time of my life.

In our weaknesses, God wants us to enjoy life and have fun. He wants to steer us away from crashing; He wants to be our strength. Even with our weaknesses, we can enjoy life, living a full life for Him as He is our power.

What weaknesses in your life could be a conduit for you to lean on God, experiencing His power through those weaknesses?

What is your first step this week toward experiencing strength beyond yourself ?

How can you encourage someone this week to live in God’s power through their weaknesses?

Originally posted 2014-05-05 08:00:40.

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