I was watching a video on mountain biking in Sedona appropriately titled “Risk Acceptance.” In it three daredevils, apparently firefighters by profession, thread a course down a redstone mountain, with the second rider’s GoPro recording the more than “risky” descent.
We watch them carefully and cautiously select their lines, which involved some periodic breathtaking drops, timely braking and delicate pivots. At times gravity caused hair-raising accelerations with nothing but blurry rock in view. Then with a sudden halt on a narrow perch, nothing but blue sky ahead.
I was reminded of this gnarly ride while reading Psalm 23:3. “He guides me in the paths of righteousness for His name’s sake.”
A shepherd leading his sheep would sometimes need to navigate a wadi, a dried up rocky stream bed that might be treacherous. Following him, the sheep would make their way to solid ground and surely greener pastures.
One comforting site to bikers on such trails are previous tire marks (I saw a few on their route down). You get a sense that you’re on the right track, that someone has completed the course before you.
With Jesus the trail has been nailed. We just need to follow his tracks. (Hebrews 12:1-2)