“The Salchow is a figure skating jump with a takeoff from a back inside edge of one foot. The rotation in the air is made in the direction of the curve of the take-off edge. The landing is made on the back outside edge of the foot opposite the one used for take-off. One or more rotations may be made in the air. It was invented by the Swedish skater Ulrich Salchow in 1909.” http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Salchow_jump#Variants
Strip away the diva behaviors, the outrageous costumes, and the unending controversies of competitive figure skating for a moment. What do you see?
I see art.
Without all the other trappings to get in the way, we are left to marvel at the pure artistry of the sport.
I’ve never been a coordinated ice skater. But even though I’ve never mastered the backward skate, let alone a spin, I’m bewitched by the strength, the spectacle, and the beauty of it all.
Especially, the dazzling jump known as the Triple Salchow.
It’s supposedly one of the most difficult tricks to master because you go into the jump “blind” and cannot see where you’re going to land. The skater needs to trust that all her training, all her practice, and everything she’s done to get her this far IS going to get her exactly where she needs to be to land…on her feet, with grace.
Isn’t it just like our God to groom us for such a jump? A leap of faith, you might say.
You see, if the skater were to take off into midair, only to begin flailing her arms, legs, and body in distrust of her training and the One who had trained her for this moment, that landing would not be a graceful one.
But if she stays full of confidence and peace, reliant on the training and instruction she has received exactly for this moment, she soars with her head held high, holding her position through the lift, spin, and free fall, landing firmly on the ground without a single wobble.
Grace in motion. Regardless of conditions.
A brilliant Psalmist brings the reality of the dangers and anxieties of this life to the forefront in Psalm 124. (Click here to read it yourself!)
Here’s one of the many reasons why God is so cool. In one amazing Psalm, He turns danger on its head and lets us in on a scary yet completely life-saving fact:
“The danger is real, but so is the rescue.” Josh Moody, Journey to Joy: The Psalms of the Ascent.
Life continually throws us up in the air and creates new circumstances and complications every time we turn around. What will we do in those moments? What will define our trust in God? Will we flail about and freak out because we’ve been thrown somewhere and don’t know where we will land? Or will we use the wisdom we’ve been graced with all along to help us stay tight in the jump and land on our feet, secure in the knowledge that He’s got us?
Let me be REALLY clear here. GOD’S GOT US. There is nothing that can happen during that “Salchow” that throws Him off EVEN IF we willingly choose to freak out. That’s our control issues sending us off kilter, sweet friends, not Him. But if we stay tight to the jump, eyes on Him? Perfect landing!
Our God is the God of Rescue. The ultimate story of rescue comes directly from Jesus. WE are the rescued. HE is the rescuer. Never in the history of the world has there been another story like His. He died for our sins and was resurrected to grace us with everlasting life. Why? Because He loves us like no one else ever has, ever could, ever will.
Our God is the God of Rescue. He’s got us. If we can just learn to stand faithful and firm, staying strong in what we know to be true, we WILL land that jump on our feet, fists pumped in the air, with God smiling by our sides.
Whatever the danger, God has a rescue plan. No matter what. No matter when. No matter why. And it’s beautifully perfect.
(excerpt from post originally dated 3/6/2014, copyright Wendie Connors 2014, all rights reserved)
Peace, love, and joy,
PS: Today (1/14/15), this post is dedicated to the beautiful Kara Tippetts at Mundane Faithfulness. You are loved by so many, but most importantly, by the God who orchestrates Triple Salchows here, and in heaven. Prayers to you.