- Areli Tenorio
The Last Shall Be First
By Areli Tenorio
We didn’t want them to see us! We darted from tree to tree in an effort to avoid the ever-present sheriffs. Then Sean (age 3) started to cry and we started to freak out because the sheriffs who were looking for us were really close.
Oklahoma Academy took their 30 students to the Wichita Mountains for an afternoon of Waldensian-style hiking. First, we were divided into groups with an adult as the leader. The challenge of the day was to reach the top of the mountain where Mrs. Holland was waiting for us with a flag. But there was an obstacle, the junior and senior boys were going to be trying to prevent the groups from reaching the summit. They were the sheriffs. My group was Mr. and Mrs. Anderson with their 2 children, Sean and Aniah, as well as Yanis and me. We were called the “Leisure” team. That means that we were gonna go “slowly”. They had the “workout” and the “regular” teams ahead of us.
We started moving in the direction of the flag. In the beginning, the game seemed easy but then as we started to get closer to the peak of the mountain we could see the “sheriffs'' looking for the groups. Suddenly, Mr. Anderson told us to run. As we started to run we were spotted by the sheriffs and they started to come for us. Desperate, we searched for a big rock to hide behind. While we were looking, Sean hurt himself and began to cry. The boys were passing close to us and we could not silence Sean. So I started to pray even though it wasn't real life it felt like real life. "Please God help them not to find us." You won't believe what happened after my prayer! The sheriffs started to go away from where we were. We took our chances and ran in the opposite direction. But we had another obstacle, the closer we got to the top of the mountain, the path became more difficult and more jagged. The rocks got bigger and bigger. We started to help the children climb the big rocks when we saw Mrs. Holland cheering for us and telling us that we had made it. We were the first group to reach the top. It was hard to believe that WE WERE THE FIRST GROUP! The “Leisure” group made it first. We prayed throughout the entire game and followed what God impressed us to do. That’s how we finished first. When you obey God you can get to the peak of the problems and win.
Mr. Anderson pointed out that we hid in the big rocks figuring that God was protecting us while we were going through a bad time. God is our rock.
The closer you get to God the more the devil tries to prevent your arrival at the top of the mountain. But this is when you need to pray more and this is when you really need to depend on your big rock. God.
This was an amazing experience and a great way to see how we depend so much on God’s protection when we are close to problems or temptations. When you pray, God is there to hear you and be your rock to protect you.