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The Good Mountain Guide?

Updated on March 22, 2013

Jesus described himself as The Good Shepherd, which of course makes us the sheep. Now sheep are regarded, unfairly in my view, as not very bright, but rather than take offence at this analogy, perhaps we should admit that we are at times, as the Bible says “like sheep that were lost, each of us going our own way.”

Jesus contrasted His love for his sheep (us) with that of the hired hand who runs away at the first sign of danger, stating that He was willing to die for us, as indeed He did. I came across an up to date twist of this in a story told by Shafqat Hussain, National Geographic Emerging Explorer.

Crossing the glacier

With his team on the trail of a snow leopard, they had to cross a glacier. The locals assured them that they didn't need special climbing gear, so they only took a rope. The three of them tied the rope to their stomachs, with their local guide following, holding the rope in his hands.

Halfway across one of the team slipped but luckily managed to jam his walking stick into the ice, so only fell about ten feet. This could have been disastrous, for there was a crevasse lake below with chunks of ice in it. The others managed to pull him up and continued their crossing, no doubt more carefully and gingerly. Shafqat later thought how stupid it was to have tied themselves together, as if one had gone all the way down, they all would.

Would you have let go of the rope?

When Shafqat asked the guide why he'd led them under under such treacherous conditions, he said, “That's why I didn't tie myself in. I just held onto the rope.” What would he have done if they'd fallen? He replied “I would have let go.”

Our Jesus wouldn't have let go of the rope!


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