Monday, September 21, 2009

Hang Time

“Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia, defines hang time as referring to a number of things: Hang time generally refers to how long something stays in the air: In basketball, the length of time a player stays in the air after jumping, either to make a slam dunk, lay-up or jump shot. In American football, hang time is the length of time a punted ball flies through the air.” In the newly popular summer sport of wake boarding hang time is flying through the air after hitting a sweet wave, or jump.

In Rock climbing hang time is referred to as the time that is spent hanging from a hold on a rock face or wall. It is also referred to as resting on ones equipment, the rope, the anchors, the harness and everything in-between to rest and to regain ones composure to finish the hard work of a difficult and challenging climb. It is also popular in the sport of rock climbing to “log some hang time.” This is something that can be purposefully done by initiating a fall in order to test the equipment and to become more comfortable with risking challenging moves in climbing, demonstrating confidence in your belay partner, and pushing your physical and mental limits. Hang time also naturally occurs in rock climbing when a rest is needed or a mistake is made during the climb and the climber accidentally falls. During hang time the belay person, a person holding the other end of the rope and taking up the climbers slack and anchoring the climber, assumes full responsibility for holding the climber in place safely for a rest or safely lowering the climber down for another shot at the climb.

On Wednesdays from 3:00-5:00pm the youth ministry at Church of the Epiphany does what we call Hang Time. At Hang Time, the youth of our church have the opportunity to “log some hang time.” What we mean by this follows more closely with the climbing definition of hang time. The youth of our church are actively being obedient to God in a moment of Sabbath rest and recreation. They are deliberately showing up to Hang Time to have fellowship with one another, to rest, play games, pray together, and to demonstrate trust in God with their week and their lives. By resting and having intentional confidence in God, our belay person, and in our equipment, the fellowship of believers, the reading of the scriptures and prayer, we are bringing honor to God. We are making our lives a living testimony that simply says, “It is not about me, it is about Jesus.” We are taking the control away from ourselves and putting it in His hands, and because of this, we can rest in His strength, learn from His direction, scope out our life’s proverbial climb in Him and with Him, and execute that climb of life beyond our own physical and mental abilities, because of His rest, and His abilities. Jesus never just leaves us hanging He gives us the rest we need; He walks us through, and climbs beside us showing us the way.

Scripture commands us in many different places to rest and Jesus Himself modeled this rest when He withdrew to solitary places to pray away from the crowds (Luke 5:16). Hebrews chapter four verses nine through twelve speaks about this hang time rest; it says, “The promise of “arrival” and “rest” is still there for God’s people. God himself is at rest. And at the end of the journey, or the climb, we’ll surely rest with God. So let’s keep at it and eventually arrive at the place of rest, and not drop out through some sort of disobedience. God means what he says. What he says goes (Hebrews 4:9-12).” So, come “log some hang time” with us at Hang Time on Wednesday’s from 3:00-5:00pm, or log your own Hang Time weekly, and get the well needed rest and direction you need in the middle of your week and follow the direction of our Lord Himself who is a God of hang time, Sabbath Rest.

In His Rest,


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