I’ve always enjoyed team games more than individual games. I’ve enjoyed being part of the team, working with others, and being around others. I thrive on competition and working together to beat a team of more talent. To me it’s always more important how you play than if you win at any cost. And so, team building has always been a staple in my life in building the best teams. One of the most common things taught in any team building activity whether it is an athletic team, a group of teens working together, or a leadership group is the trust fall.
In a trust fall, one partner stands with their arms expended from their sides so that they appear to be a cross. Their partner stands behind them. How a trust fall works is that the person standing in the position of a cross falls backwards like a tree would as If it were falling down. Their partner is meant to catch them as they are half way to the ground. It is not natural to throw oneself to the ground, it is not natural to believe that you will be caught as you fall to the ground, and so there is an aspect of trust that has to occur as person one decides that they are going to fall allowing their partner to catch them.
I have seen this done on the grass, off of porches, and into large groups of people. I have even seen it done off the top of a zipline. I have seen people easily be caught, and at times I have seen the catching partner miss, forget their role, or even step out of the way. It’s meant to teach groups that have to work together that they are not doing it alone, that there is someone greater going to be there when they take that step and allow themselves to travel towards the ground.
This is how I have felt as I make the choice to embark on this journey. Yet to me it is not a vision of hurling to the ground. It is a vision of two cliffs, high above an ocean, and the trusting is more of a stepping out than a falling. Like I am leaping out into this vast chasm and trusting that I will be carried to the other side, that I will not be swallowed up into the sea below. To me this is a trust fall. One that I have faced before as I embarked on Guatemala 13 years ago for the first time, and then 11 years ago again for a more permanent move. One that later took me to Virginia, then Slippery Rock, and now to Guatemala again. It is not about standing there wanting to fall; it’s about falling and knowing the One that will catch you. My faith has led me to this position. I have been assured that this is what God has for me in this moment. And so I stand, with my arms wide open, close my eyes, and let myself fall. I know that this leap of faith will land in the arms of my Savior and He has something planned for my life at this point and time that even I cannot see.