When I was 16, my friend Shruti and I were adventure-hunting on a trail when we found a breathtaking waterfall that fell 80 feet next to a small beach. We were on a cliff toward the top of the waterfall and decided we would climb down the cliff so we could make it to the beach below and go exploring.

There was a fence that stood between us and the path down the cliff with a sign that said: “Warning: No Trespassing.” But we were in search of adventure and wouldn’t let a sign stand in our way.

We climbed over the fence and slowly started down the cliff. The descent was exhilarating. When we finally got to the bottom of the waterfall, we were excited.

However, it didn’t take us long to figure out what we had done. We were at the bottom of the cliff with the tide coming in. Climbing back up looked much more difficult than coming down had been. At any time the tide could come in and carry us out to sea.

When we were at the top of the cliff we had choices. We could have kept walking on the trail, we could have gone back to the car, and we could have simply enjoyed the view. But because we chose to ignore the warnings, now our only choices were to be washed out to sea or to climb back up the steep cliff.

Our decisions in life affect us the same way. When we choose the right, we have more choices and more freedom. But when we make choices contrary to the will of the Lord, our options become more and more limited until we are enslaved by our choices and lose our freedom.

Shruti and I did what we should all do when we’ve fallen into this trap. We knelt down and confessed to Heavenly Father that we had made a wrong choice and that we needed His help to fix it.

The climb back to the top of the cliff was slow and hard, but with the Lord’s help we made it. From this experience I learned that all of our choices have consequences, but Heavenly Father is willing to help us if we turn to Him.