A friend and I went hiking on a snow-covered mountain in southern California. Because of the combination of warm days and below-freezing evening temperatures, many of the trails were covered with a sheet of ice. While walking along one of these trails, I slipped and fell nearly a thousand feet down the slope of a rocky gorge, eventually coming to a stop when my body hit a small tree.
I suffered severe injuries, including a compound fracture to one of my legs, a broken pelvis, a broken wrist and finger, lacerations on my face and body, various internal injuries, and internal bleeding. After the fall I suffered from hypothermia.
The pain was intense, and I remember thinking momentarily that it would have been much easier had I just fallen a few more feet and got the whole thing over with. I knew, however, that I was in a position to prove what I had been taught in Christian Science—that the real man is created in the image of God, obedient to the laws of God. I knew that man's true identity is not contained in flesh and bones but is spiritual. My purpose in living was, and is, to gain a greater understanding of my relationship to God.