Am I in a horror movie? Are we all about to die? Is this for real?
Horror story plotline 1 – background set up of movie character’s demise.
I am definitely not a fan of the horror movie genre, but even I have watched a few and wondered what some of those characters before they reach their demise, were thinking in the first place. Such as those typical scenarios where there is a crazy murderer on the loose, but there’s a character who decides to investigate by shouting “heay, is there anybody there?”- dumb! In my scenario, if this was a movie they would be wondering why I decided to climb a mountain with a juice box, four sweets and wearing flip flops – dumb! What could possibly go wrong? As explained in Lesson 2, we were having to climb to the top in order to freely access the roads and get off the mountain. So when there is a near earth shattering clap of thunder and the darkened sky suddenly illuminates – five words suddenly pop into my head.
Horror story plotline 2 – ‘that annoying female character’
In the movies she’s normally a tearful blonde female, that screams at the slightest thing, gets left behind and falls and trips on something. Well in my circumstance, I’m not blonde, but I tick most of the rest of the boxes for the role of that annoying female character! I’m up a mountain and in torrential downpour, when there is a loud clap of thunder and the lightning strikes so close to us I keep letting out an involuntary scream over and over again! One hour into our supposed 1/2 hour stroll, we are trekking up steep terrain at pace. What’s more, it’s difficult to see as the conditions are like walking with an overhead power shower turned on. it’s so slippery walking in my flip flops, I lose my footing, trip and painfully twist my ankle. I don’t think anyone can tell because of the rain, but there are serious tears falling now. Boxes ticked.
Horror story plotline 3 – ‘mind your step’
In the movies, groups sometimes find themselves navigating booby-trapped floors. In my scenario, the words of advice being shouted to the back of the group are ‘Look carefully where you step, only step on where you can clearly see the path – nothing else’. I’m handed one of the big branches fashioned into strong sticks being distributed and I think great – now I can take some of the pressure off my twisted ankle and use the stick to walk as well as keep a firm balance in the slippery conditions. However, I notice that the rest of the group are using their sticks differently – tapping the ground & swishing it from side to side. I quickly ask what was going on and learn that aside from snakes being on planes (haha) they can actually be found on mountains!!! Apparently heavy rain drive snakes into clear open pathways where they’re camouflaged in the muddy path and someone ahead has seen one. The five words – ‘we are going to die’ keep going through my mind over and over and the tears continue to fall.
Horror story plotline 4 – ‘shhh…what was that noise?’
In horror movie clichés, there is often a monster out on the loose and the cast have got no cellphone signal or seemingly way out. There is also always someone who hears something before the monster appears. In my case, since the venomous snake sighting, the group is more audible and nervous, yelping at anything – sadly fear is contagious. Someone ahead jokingly starts singing the chorus to Gloria Gaynors ‘I will survive’ and we all join in which lessons the agitation in the group….until someone says “shhh, what was that noise?” At this point I’ve had enough, my legs almost buckle beneath me (I won’t confirm if my bowels loosened) – I can’t take any more. We are told to move silently as it sounds like it’s a group of adult baboons, our singing and noise is drawing them closer to us. No one has to tell me twice. After about 10 minutes, I finally stop sobbing and in accordance with 2 Cor 10:5, bring my fearful thoughts of death under control and I silently open my hotline to heaven and begin to cry out to God!
Horror story plotline 5 – Do the opposite of what you’ve been advised
For example, when they’ve been told in the horror movie don’t go down there, don’t open that, let’s stay together – but someone wanders off etc. ignoring advice. Yes we’ve been told to be quiet- but I can’t! I started of with silent prayer, then quietly whispering and then one of the guys ahead of me joins in, then another joins in and we are after a while all praying and praising God loudly. Doing the opposite of what we were advised earlier, but the funny thing is – there are no longer any approaching baboon sounds and now instead of ‘I will survive’ we are singing a range of worship songs. The torrential rain stops as we near the peak too and though soaked through in near subzero temperature, we eventually stumble like long distance runners at the end of a race, onto the road to escape.
Horror story plotline 6 – Good triumphs over evil, higher power intervention, the mother of all clichés
Yes I am sure lovers of the horror film genre would of wanted a storyline where in the seriously adverse extreme weather and resulting muddy conditions, one of us slipped and fell to our death over the side of the mountain. Maybe one of the many varieties of poisonous adders and cobras could of bit us and then one of the group died because we couldn’t get any medical treatment – possibly the one who kept screaming and had exposed feet climbing a mountain in flip flops. Or perhaps ‘Planet of the Apes style’ the unafraid of humans adult baboons could of savagely attacked us as we encroached on their territory. Or there could of been a ‘Lord of the Flies type’ group insurrection, where we turned on each other in a very short space of time, as after all our nerves were frayed. People were tired, hungry, thirsty and in a very serious extreme situation where masks are dropped and personalities revealed.
Thankfully, all the above shoulda/woulda/coulda DIDN’T happen by the grace of God! Even though they were plausible scenarios and very real alternative endings to my situation! All I can testify and say is that there was paranormal activity that took place on the mountain and this was Psalm 18:5-6:-
The cords of the grave coiled around me; the snares of death confronted me. In my distress I called to the LORD; I cried to my God for help. From his temple he heard my voice; my cry came before him, into his ears.
Call it a cliché or what ever you want, all I know is that I am truly thankful that God is good, answers prayer and is an ever present help in times of trouble. Amen.