"Success is not measured by what you accomplish but by the opposition you have encountered, and the courage with which you have maintained the struggle against overwhelming odds."
-Orison Swett Marden

I am so happy today; I am absolutely rinsed but I feel great, I conquered a real mountain. There is a new set of routes at the wall. I always like a new set of routes, it kind of symbolizes a fresh start and new challenges. For the past two days I have been trying to get a purple route on the overhang down but with little success. Today I went straight for it but once again couldn't make it onto the face of the overhang. After a couple of tries I turned my attention to an orange route on the slope. I have never made it to the top of the sloping wall, every time fear just grips me and this orange route was no different. It is such a mental barrier to get past, especially when you are up there and need to make a final push for a hold that seems just out of reach; making it for the first time is like making it over the peak of a mountain, there is an aweosome feeling of accomplishment and a fresh mantal of confidence in yourself and more importantly in God as you come down the other side. I always get so close to the top then bail. So I meditated and prayed before hitting the ascent and committed myself to only doing this orange route until I got it down and abstaining completely from the rest of the wall, however long it took me. It required a small jump reach for the final hold or a leg reach out to the overhang to the right into order to get the last hold before the top (which flipping terrified me). About two hours into the session, after several fails and a couple of falls off the jump I decided to give it a crack with the overhang foothold. It was quite a tense moment (for me anyway, I think everyone else was doing just fine) but I smashed it, and got both hands on the top; even got a pull up in before jumping down. It was amazing, I landed just grinning ear to ear. A ZA A ZA FIGHTING!

Today was such a turning point and marks the first breakthrough in my climbing. As far as fear, ability and discipline goes I can see that God has clearly been at work in me, helping me improve and pushing me forward. I took some time before hitting the routes to just kneel and pray and allow God to be the center of my task and He really was. When I wait on God and allow Him to fill me and for the Holy Spirit to flow through me when I am climbing I feel myself change, and this is something that is transferable to every aspect of my life. It just amazes me.

highlights of the day:

bff shopping trip with Si
one final climbing session with Ben before he leaves tomorrow
crash bandicoot racing and banter - good times
smashing the crap out of the orange route

Peace and blessings everyone.

song of the day: Salvation Army Band - Phil Keaggy, incredible Christian guitarist, listen through and be amazed

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