Can we talk?
With 24 hours news and rampant social media we hear of every bad thing, event or product no matter how obscure and it changes us. We begin to look over our shoulders, wonder at the person walking towards us and especially we get scared for our children. I’m a parent, I get that. I have fear for my kids too. But….where are the days of seeking and living an adventure? Where are the days of allowing children to make mistakes, to get hurt and to grow in character by learning? A protective bubble doesn’t equip a future generation to strive to solve the problems we’ve created. In many ways I think the rise in extreme sports and risky events is a byproduct of this. We’re wired by God to seek the challenge and ‘safe’ is not very motivating.
Unfortunately I see the same attitude has crept into the church.
Our relationship with God now seems to be about our own personal comfort and protection. We’re so focused on these things we’ve allowed the Great Commission of going into the world and making disciples slip away. But there is a greater danger in mimicking this cultural trend. When we allow fear to dictate and direct our actions where is our strength coming from and what does this show about how big and powerful our God is? When we fall to fear that telegraphs a lack of faith to the world around us, and especially our children who watch us live out that same faith.
Our journey with God is about faith and that takes trust. This trust is not just for salvation but also for the day-to-day. We see this example of faith/trust in times of trouble lived out by Joseph, Joshua and David. We celebrate them and teach about them in our Sunday Schools. So why don’t we live like them?
Even Jesus displayed a faith/trust in God and definitely lived on the edge. In Gethsemene he declared “not my will but your will be done” (Matt.26:39), a bold declaration of trust that had nothing to do with his own comfort and safety but rather everything to do with obedience to the will of God the Father.
But then Jesus knew that because he also walked closely with God so knew his role. He told his followers he came not to bring peace but a sword (Matt.10:34) and we all know swords are dangerous. Hey, they cut people! That’s the point (get it??).
We say we want to be like Christ and then we hide behind a wall. The Bible says if anyone is in Christ he is a new creation (2 Cor.5:17) which means something can and should drive our day-to-day lives. It means we’re his and HE’S in control.
So eat an apple without washing it, go for a walk without a water bottle, ride a bicycle on the street instead of the sidewalk (but be sure to wear a helmet!) and begin to LIVE perhaps a little more dangerously because you know who you are and WHOSE you are.