We live in a society where life is usually manipulated and controlled by ourselves. We have the ability to choose what college we attend, to choose who we hang out with, to choose what food we eat. Usually, the things we choose are known to us. I choose to keep attending college instead of leaving family, friends, money, comfort, you name it behind for some extraordinary dream, because it’s what I know. It’s scary to increase our odds of rejection and failure!
If you are not willing to risk the unusual, you will have to settle for the ordinary. – Jim Rohn
But… I can’t help but wonder what I’m missing as I dim this passion inside of me. What’s the passion bubbling in you? Someone reading this has always wanted to be a painter or photographer. Someone reading this has a deep desire to quit their job to move half way across the world. And someone reading this feels a heart throb to become a foster parent. So, my friend, what’s holding you back?
Logical thinking will not be enough to get answers to the questions that matter most in life. We need revelation from God. – Henry B. Eyring
It’s logic that justifies our answer to “what’s holding you back”? Logic says that you have a steady income now and you shouldn’t risk giving that up. Logic whispers it’s not worth it to start a whole new career at the age of 50. Logic repeats, you can’t leave everything behind for this so-called “calling”. But… what does God say?
My counsel is this: Live freely, animated and motivated by God’s Spirit. Then you won’t feed the compulsions of selfishness…Why don’t you choose to be led by the Spirit and so escape the erratic compulsions of a law-dominated existence? – Galatians 5:16 & 5:18, The MSG.
Living by the ways of society is enslaving because being a part of this world means being apart from God; and to live by the ways of God means to live freely. Our society will always convince us to purchase the next best thing, yet this is living life in an enclosed box! Can’t you see the beauty in living a life outside of the trendiest outfits or the most financially successful business? Can you taste the victory of the person who lives a life in the freedom of our Forgiver and Leader, Jesus Christ? What holds you captive– your money, your anger, your fears, your ego?
…Where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is freedom – 2 Corinthians 3:17, ESV
It’s so easy to reason that leaving behind the comfort of my own home isn’t worth the risk to spread the name of Jesus in an unknown land. The thoughts trickle in, “What if I can’t fall asleep ever because I don’t have a bed”? Lies are formed as we start to think that momentarily giving up our money or safety or friendships isn’t worth the incredible experience of meeting a culture who has NEVER heard of our God, Jesus Christ. Who are we to say that these earthly possessions aren’t worth giving up so someone across the world can have eternal life?
And this is the promise He made to us– eternal life. – 1 John 2:25, ESV
A ship in harbor is safe, but that is not what ships are built for. – John A. Shedd
While the premise of this post may be most applicable to missions, it can truly apply to wherever we are in life. There are reasons people have to not travel to an unknown area of the world, and there are people right in our neighborhood whom God has been laying on our hearts. Are we willing to lay down our pride to mow their lawn so Jesus can shine through us? Will we risk inviting the coworker of another culture to our church which worships Jesus Christ, the Savior? Can we speak up to our professors or bosses about the truth in which the gospel brings?
Ultimately, it’s up to you to decide what’s worth the risk. Your risk may be praying for healing over a classmate, playing worship music in the car as you ride with non-believing passengers, or even asking a cute and Jesus-lovin’ guy on a date.
Take a risk today; and take a risk tomorrow. Check your heart and see God move in a new way now that you’ve given up control.
I’m praying for you, my beloved friend.