As I make my way up the rock face alongside the 20’ waterfall on the island of Oahu, I think to myself, “What am I doing?” I consider myself an adrenaline junkie, so doing this type of thing is what I live for. Yes, serious injury or even death is always a possibility. But I’m also the guy that says to take chances. When you’re feeling it, you’re feeling it. And today I’m feeling it!
As I reach the top of the waterfall and get to my feet, I turn around and look back at the mass of people gathered around the 20 ‘ x 20’ pool of water. This will be the last time I see these people again, as well as the pool of water, until I’m halfway down the 50 foot blind leap of faith along the Luana Falls. I wave, smile, and turn to follow the local Hawaiians through the dense forest as we skirt our way along cliffs and through the raging creek beds. Just getting to the top of the jump is an adventure in itself. But after twenty minutes, with sweat pouring down my face, we get to our destination.
A look of fear immediately comes across my face, as the locals all start to laugh. I peer over the edge. I see moist leaves and branches mostly, with glimpses of the water as the leaves rustle in the wind. I also hear the thunderous roar of the waterfall. That is why they call this the blind leap. Over the years, the vegetation has drastically grown thicker and more dense. And that is why the jump is so exhilarating, even to the locals, as the jumper comes shooting out among the trees into a dark blue pool of water.
As the locals start to jump one after the other, it’s almost my turn. My stomach starts to turn into knots with a queasy feeling inside me. The guy before me does a reverse swan dive leap through the leaves, I hear his splash, and then a cheer, and step to the edge. It’s my turn. I look to my left and gaze at the valley below….this cliff is way higher than I thought. But I’m not one to step away from something like this. It’ll all be over in seconds. With only one local left behind me to jump, he points and tells me to jump through a tiny opening in the leaves where it’s less dense and safer. I look down one last time and can just make out a few people waiting for my descent through the leaves. I take a deep breath and jump.
I hit the small opening dead on and shoot through the leaves in less than a second with forty feet to go. The crowd is screaming. I feel like I’m flying. The free fall is an incredible experience, feeling like I am in the air forever. But in just seconds my feet touch the water and the rest of my body plunges through the surface. I swim to the top, pop my head out of the water as the throng of people cheer.
It’s over! I did it! As I look from the water, back to the top of the cliff, I think to myself, “What was I thinking?” But I loved it!!
I’ve actually done this jump quite a few times since that day. It got easier with each jump. But the feeling in the air was always the same. I’ve had many experiences jumping off some pretty sweet cliffs in my lifetime. But this plunge is never to be forgotten!
How many of you have ever taken a plunge into a pool of water off a cliff? How many of you have ever taken a plunge into a swimming pool? Or how many of you daily take the plunge into God’s Word?
That’s the reason I’m writing this specific blog, to encourage you to daily commit your life to His Word. Whether it’s five minutes a day or thirty minutes a day, God wants you to get to know Him on a personal level. I know in my past with my busy and chaotic schedule outside of prison, I hardly ever plunged into the Word. It took a prison experience to daily commit my life to Him.
My alarm is set for 5:30am every morning before the mass of inmates start to stir. And for a half hour every morning, in the quietness of the unit, I plunge into His Word. I couldn’t ask for a better way to start the day. And I couldn’t ask for a better feeling. It doesn’t get much better than that