I’m pretty sure that I pulled this snippet from the pages of a National Geographic magazine. I think the article had something to do with recycling. But I know why I ripped out the page. I was creating a collage to describe my Global Internship experiences. Pictures, words, and phrases that would-for me- tell the story of my 16 months in Indonesia and hopefully allow me to gain some perspective.
That explains why I was pulling pictures from National Geographic but it doesn’t really explain why I picked that particular page to illustrate my internship. Or why I’ve actually been using this picture as the desktop background on my laptop. There’s something about these particular sentences that stirs me. I suppose that the simplest explanation is that they remind me that real, right living contains an element of risk. Sometimes obedience means dancing on the wire without a safety net.
I know that I’ve posted them here before, but these words seem to challenge me at every turn in recent days so I offer them to you this Tuesday evening:
We can’t wait for conditions to be perfect. Nor can we wait for things to be free of all risks- absolutely free, absolutely safe. Instead of protecting ourselves, we have to release ourselves. Instead of hoarding, we are to give and invest. Instead of drifting, we are to pursue life. Instead of doubting we are to courageously trust. ~Charles Swindoll
I’m realizing how many self-imposed limitations I have; how I allow them to keep me from what I could do and at times what I ought to do. My Sunday evenings (working with youth) are often riddled with reservations. I’m not dismissing caution and careful consideration in leadership. I’m not an advocate for recklessness. I am criticizing my own practice of hiding behind a seemingly-wise smoke screen that keeps me feeling secure. The problem lies with being motivated by my own desire for safety rather than a desire to love. Generally, I play it safe and probably miss the greatest joys. What about you? Are you just playing it safe?