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This is an actual sculpture called The Journey created by Matt Wilson in welded steel. Twelve Inches Tall. Colors added only for web clarity.
Matt Wilson is an artist who dropped out of college and was hired by Loy Stewart, CEO of Detyens Shipyard. Loy has ALS and his wife Judy has MS. They support not only hundreds of employees and the community with free healthcare, but supply a place for people like Matt to create his art. This is his first creation, and is "signed Number Two" in my office at Trident Technical College.
This is the story of "The Journey"
Most of us climb the first ladder in life by going to school, getting a job, and starting a family. The first ladder feels like a dangerous journey with much risk, but in hindsight is actually the easiest. Many will get there and stop, confident that they’ve accomplished all they need to do in life. They will live their life with relatively little risk but some comfort because they’re on the largest and safest platform. Many people never get any further in their Spiritual Journey.
The second platform is higher and enticing from the viewpoint of the first one, but there is no way to get there. No steps, ladders, or handholds are visible. There are three ways to get there. First, have physical strength to force your way onto it. Second, be smart enough to figure out how to do it without steps. The third option is the most common way that people reach this platform. It is achieved with the help of someone who has already been there and is reaching back to help them up. Many realize that influence comes from God’s hand in their life.
The third platform is higher and more enticing for anyone who has already endured the journey to the second level. This trip is the most difficult and dangerous of all because of the danger in falling and the design of the ladder, which requires exquisite balance, insight, and even risk to stand on the top step to reach up alone to the platform above. Many do not reach this level and many fall making the effort. Faith and trust in God often grow strong.
The last ladder, however, is curiously the one with almost no danger and no restrictions. We don’t know where it takes us or what our reward will be when we reach it, but we are confident that we should be on that ladder. We stop reaching for accomplishments or platforms and focus on the journey up. Our attention isn’t on the end, but on the relationships we establish and the people we can help along the way. We often reach up AND back down from this ladder, not knowing what the result will be, but confident that it will be worthwhile in the lives of those we influence. Eternal Significance and not Success are most important on this part of your Journey.