After a particularly rough night of high blood pressure and low heart rate, I landed in the hospital yesterday. I am happy to report that after a couple of bags of fluid I am much better and on my way up. Maybe not as quickly as I’d like, but moving in the right direction nonetheless.
My only outing today was to pick up Josiah from day camp. I was getting into my chair and got turned at just the wrong angle. I started to slip and was heading slowly to the floor, just like last week. I was so mad! I knew if I just let it happen slowly, I wouldn’t get hurt. I knew I only had a few seconds to make my decision; to play it safe and not get hurt or take a risk and go for the seemingly impossible. I was completely backward at this point, facing the back of my chair with my torso on the seat. The odds were definitely against me, but I was just too angry to give up. I battled and wiggled and pulled and yelled. Several times I almost lost it, but I just kept fighting and knowing that I’d rather go down fighting than give up. Finally, after quite a battle, I somehow ended up in my chair!
So this is the metaphor of my life, and yours too. It’s so much better to go down fighting and have the scars to show for it than to play it safe. The Christian life is not for those who insist on playing it safe. It is for those who know that Jesus is exactly who He claimed to be and know that living for Him and like Him is to live dangerously. It’s dangerous to our egos and sense of control. It’s dangerous to our human sense of fairness. It’s dangerous to our pocket books and plans. And quite possibly it is dangerous to our physical lives.
Living for Jesus and loving God’s ways will cost you everything, but not nearly as much as serving the world and its master. It isn’t something that we notice all at once, but little by litle, the God of your life will come and stake his claim for what is already his. Who will that be?
I’ve often heard people say, “I just want my life back!” My answer to them is, “What life? You gave that up when you became a Christian.” It’s the truth. We are not our own. We’ve all tried at times to live life “on our own terms”, and “to just do it our way”. The problem with that is that there is no such thing! The world tries to tell us that we have to “take care of ourselves because no one else will.” The minute we think we’re living for ourselves, to meet our own needs, etc. etc., we have fallen into deception because we are either slaves of the Enemy and his system or we are bond servants (under submission by choice) to Jesus and His Kingdom. There is no third option. (Romans 6)
There are those who are afraid that people will think they are radical if they really let God have His way in their lives. Here is the truth. If you are a Christian, then by definition you believe that the God of the universe became an embryo in the womb of a teenage virgin. That’s really out there. If you believe that and you are trying to avoid being radical, well, I hate to be the one to break it to you, but you’re too late.
With that in mind, what is the point of “playing it safe”. We may as well jump in and live and love and believe with absolute abandon no matter what the perceived cost. The cross is the symbol of all we hold dear as believers. It is anything but a symbol of safety. Live a life worthy of the cross!