Summary: Pay the price

How Bad Do You Want To Live ?

Luk 18:18 And a certain ruler asked him, saying, Good Master, what shall I do to inherit eternal life?

Luk 18:19 And Jesus said unto him, Why callest thou me good? none is good, save one, that is, God.

Luk 18:20 Thou knowest the commandments, Do not commit adultery, Do not kill, Do not steal, Do not bear false witness, Honor thy father and thy mother.

Luk 18:21 And he said, All these have I kept from my youth up.

Luk 18:22 Now when Jesus heard these things, he said unto him, Yet lackest thou one thing: sell all that thou hast, and distribute unto the poor, and thou shalt have treasure in heaven: and come, follow me.

Luk 18:23 And when he heard this, he was very sorrowful: for he was very rich.

Luk 18:24 And when Jesus saw that he was very sorrowful, he said, How hardly shall they that have riches enter into the kingdom of God!

Rom 8:13 For if ye live after the flesh, ye shall die: but if ye through the Spirit do mortify the deeds of the body, ye shall live.

• His surgery was (May 5, 2003) at St. Mary’s Hospital in Grand Junction, Colorado and his harrowing story was carried in newspapers and on television around the world since this 27-year-old didn’t show up for work in his hometown of Aspen on Tuesday morning. It’s not the kind of celebrity anyone would willingly choose, to be sure.

• For this seasoned expert, it was only supposed to be a daylong adventure in the extreme sport of "canyoneering" that combines hiking and climbing up then down rugged, remote terrain, using rock climbing gear to negotiate narrow canyons. After solo winter expeditions to the summit of 49 of the 54 peaks in Colorado that are 14,000 feet and above since December 1998, a few hours hiking around Blue John Canyon in southeastern Utah’s Canyonlands National Park seemed like a walk in the dark. But something went badly wrong this time for Aron Ralston.

• as the scrappy mountain climber moved through a three-foot-wide ’slot canyon,’ he pushed his arm into a crack in the canyon wall and a 1000-pound slab of sandstone suddenly shifted and broke loose, crushing his right hand and forearm and pinning him in a horrifying, excruciating prison. He tried to use his ropes and anchors to free himself, but couldn’t budge the massive boulder. Day turned to night and hours turned to days as Aron - who had narrowly escaped death in an avalanche in February - was forced to wait for the help that was unlikely to arrive. By Tuesday morning he had completely exhausted his water supply, and by Thursday morning - after five agonizing days of forced standing in the unforgiving elements of the remote Utah wilderness - he realized that drastic measures would have to be taken if he was going to survive.

• Aron Ralston had only two choices as the sun rose over Blue John Canyon last Thursday morning: He could die with his arm trapped beneath a 1000-pound boulder, alone in the desert, or he could amputate his right arm with his own pocketknife.

• Utah park ranger Steve Swanke was in awe: "I’ve never seen anybody who has [such a] will to live and is as much of a warrior as Aron is, and I’ve been doing this for 25 years."

• Because of his strong desire to live, Ralston was somehow able to tie a tourniquet to his right arm, and then painstakingly do the unthinkable - crudely sever the crushed limb just below the elbow with his own knife. Once the grim task was done, he found a way to set up his climbing ropes and hooks, then rappelled 60 feet straight down a rock wall to the canyon floor, where he began the arduous trek back out to his vehicle.

• That’s where rescuers found him late Thursday afternoon, bloody and dehydrated, staggering along a stream. What was left of his right arm was still wrapped in the tourniquet, and he was only two miles from his car; he had walked seven miles with his wound. His was quickly airlifted out of the canyon by the rescue helicopter to St. Mary’s Hospital in Grand Junction, where the veteran climber is still listed in serious condition.

• Authorities and medical experts say that if Ralston had not cut off his arm to free himself, he would have surely died from either dehydration, exposure, or the effects of his limb being crushed. But were such drastic measures really necessary? Yes, we know he would have eventually died from his injuries, but what if he had just postponed his tough decision? Wouldn’t someone have found him if he had just waited?

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