top of page

7 Non-negotiables for the Greatest Challenge of Your Life

By Dennis Rainey

Life in our world today is challenging … a lot like climbing Mt. Everest. It’s 29,029 feet tall, and over the years many climbers have died in their quest to reach the summit.

If you were about to embark on climbing the tallest mountain in the world, wouldn’t you like to know the “non-negotiables of survival?” has everything you need to know, including “7 Survival Rules” for your climb to the summit. Here’s what veteran Everest climbers say …

1. Always have the last word on your safety. “It's very healthy to take control of your own gear, oxygen and climbing decisions. To turn around allows for new attempts. It's wiser to fail than to die.”

2. Respect the weather.Bad weather can turn an easy, sunny climb into a horrible, fatal inferno. The change is often fast and unforgiving.”

3. Use the ropes.Don't hurry, clip in everywhere. At technical parts, fixed with old rope, clip in to several lines at once. Almost yearly climbers die in the Himalayas due to old rope.”

4. Drink plenty.High altitude health problems like headache, edema, frostbite, confusion and such are actually more often related to dehydration than lack of oxygen.”

5. Know yourself. “In dangerous situations, we all react differently. Some freeze, some panic, some are rational. How will you react?”

6. Know your gear, oxygen and alpine medicine. “Preparation is the seed of success. On Everest, it’s also the key to survival.”

7. Avalanche.Avoid climbs following heavy snowfalls. … don’t climb the icefall too late in the day, and—well—keep your fingers crossed.”

So, are you ready to ascend Everest this summer? Not so much? Count me out!

But let me draw a real-life parallel: Life today is filled with dangerous, life-threatening challenges and precarious situations. You may even wonder if anyone is holding your rope!

The greatest challenge of your life is living your life. Since life was created by God, would you like to know what His seven non-negotiables are … not just for survival but also for success in life? Like the seven listed for climbing Mt. Everest, these are very practical. They are also intensely spiritual since God designed life as we know it.

Are you ready? These are very gritty—they go to the core of how He made us …

#1: Seek God, not sin.

For thus says the Lord to the house of Israel: “Seek Me and live.” Amos 5:4

God is the life-giver. We will find life in no other. But as sinful creatures, our hearts are naturally prone to wander from our Creator. Our souls were made to pursue God, know God, and walk with God … nothing else. It’s only as we pursue Him that we truly find the life that He designed for us to live.