Just got back from a great camping weekend near Banff in the Canadian Rockies. As promised, I’ve got pics to share. But first, a God moment.

Almost fifteen years ago I hauled a bunch of youth into the wilds of Northern Ontario for a rock climbing trip. At the end of a scorching day framed by epic scrapes and bruises, we stopped at a lake to cool off and found the water was glacially cold. Like, go into shock cold. The youth… were youth. In they went, yipping and shivering. I, on the other hand, was over thirty. I stood at the water’s edge, desperately wanting to slosh into the water. I caught myself thinking, “I used to do that.”

And then it hit me: By not joining the youth in the icy water, I was choosing to die.

Not that day, not finally and forever, but I was choosing to back away from the precipice of risk and adventure in favor of comfort and laziness. I was choosing the beginning of the end of my explorer’s spirit.

Faced with that realization, it was a no brainer. In I went. Because I decided right there and then that I would never choose to make my life smaller. My age itself will eventually do that to me, stealing my physical, mental, and emotional capacity one adventure at a time, but I won’t help that process along. I will fight it every step of the way. I will live. Period.

Fast Forward to this weekend, fifteen years later, where there was another glacially cold lake and a great little cliff to leap from into the icy depths. I paused. And then felt God reminding me of that important promise to choose life. And then jumped, not once, or twice, but three times.

Because I choose to live. Sometimes the choice between life and death comes packaged as flagrant sin, but sometimes, or maybe even daily, it sneaks up on us cloaked in the anassuming guise of little choices. Like chilly lake water. And man, was it cold. But worth it!

Now for the pics. The first one is my son Noah choosing life in the same lake I jumped in. Enjoy (you can click on the images to see them bigger)!