I had known of the Wallendas before. Nik's grandfather infamously fell to his death while performing on the high wire as did other members of his family in separate incidents. But Nik carries on his family's heritage believing he is called to not only do daring, thrilling feats on the high wire but to share Christ through his giftings that God has given him.
Nik Wallenda came across my radar when I first watched his famous walk across Niagra Falls and he had me hooked. Miked not only to his dad, but into the network's boards, and not knowing his mike was "hot", I watched as he glorified Jesus and was so thankful for the opportunity to do what he was doing and let God know it. It was mesmerizing. Then I watched him do it again across the Grand Canyon and in Chicago between two buildings. So when this book came up I was super interested to find out how he came to his strong faith and the story of his family.
This book was really good. Nik is very upfront about his shortcomings. How being in the business for all these years has required that he be very particular and in control, but how not leaving that at the door when he came home almost caused his marriage to fall apart even though he and his wife, also a performer, loved each other dearly. I really appreciated his honesty in how he really had to seek God and still battles it today, with God's help. He tells his story of how his great-grandfather has influenced his life, how his mom and dad instilled faith in the Lord in him from his youngest years and how it all leads his decisions and life today. Just as he uses a balancing pole to keep from falling on the high wire Nik relates God to be his balancing pole in life to keep him from falling...to a keep a balance between ego and humbleness, drive and being led, control and faith to keep him from falling in life.
"Yes, I have a job to do. Yes I was born to do that job. And yes, the aim of that job is to thrill people by performing seemingly impossible feats. But, in realizing those feats, if I fail to reflect the glory of God I have accomplished nothing."
Balance: A Story of Faith, Family and Life on the Line
A very interesting peek into the life and thoughts of a man who literally puts his life into God's hands in every way yet never expects that God "magically" keeps him falling.
If you've watched any of his walks, heard of his family, are interested in what makes daredevil performers tick or just like a good autobiography this is a great read. I give it a 10/10.
Linked: Semicolon Saturday Review of Books