Thursday, March 6, 2008

Playing it safe can be risky part two....

No notebook blogger today, the weather has been great this week so class has mainly been outside so we have not had breaks like we do while inside which means I have not had the time to write anything in my notebook. Besides I have more I want to say on risk anyway... if you have not read the first part just scroll down a bit. Like I said at the end of part one, our slowness to act when an opportunity presents itself comes from our uncertainty of a situation and the fact that we like to be in control. We say we trust God, but then an opportunity comes along which may change our whole life and all of a sudden it is like "Whoa! God what is going on here?" We have a choice, either grab that bucking bull of an opportunity and trust God to protect you from getting gored, ( sorry I just had to use that) or wait and say "Lord, riding that bull is going to hurt, I think I am going to wait for a calmer bull". Have you ever caught yourself praying for things to be easier, for everything to just fall into place so you don't have to worry? I know I have, life would be so much simpler.

Except well, life is not supposed to be a cakewalk, it is supposed to be filled with trials, it is how we grow as Christians and human beings. That bull of an opportunity may very well have been placed in front of us for the specific purpose of helping us grow spiritually. God wants us to trust Him, and how better to help that trust grow than to put opportunities in front of us that will enable us to grow in Him. Sure, we still grow as Christians by just reading our Bible and learning more about who our Creator is and everything He has done for us. But until we are faced with an opportunity or a situation that will allow us to whole heartedly surrender all trust to God we can never reach our full potential and bring God the glory He deserves.

Take Gideon, he has his army camped out ready to attack the Midianites. The Lord knowing us humans are quick to puff ourselves up decides he is going to present an opportunity for Gideon's trust in the Him to grow. God tells Gideon to send home troops and 31,700 of his 32,000 troops head back. Now if that had been me and I was about to attack enemy forces who were as "numerous as locusts" I would have wanted every man who could hold a spear with me. If I was standing out there in Gideon's sandals as I watched 99% of my army march away I would be thinking to myself, "Hey Lord, I know you are sovereign over all , but I don't feel so good with only 300 men!". We are never probably going be in that sort of dramatic position but that does not mean God does not put opportunities in our path that will involve a similar choice of trusting God. We climb on that bull and ride for all it's worth or we don't, maybe regret it for the rest of our life, and possibly miss seeing God perform something miraculous. BTW if you don't know the story of Gideon, him and his 300 men destroyed the Midianite army killing over 100,000.

Every opportunity is a gift from God, what we do with them is our gift to God. Ephesians 5:16 says "Make the most of every opportunity in these evil days". There is a saying "Everybody wants to go to heaven, but nobody wants to die", you want the reward but not the pain. When I am presented an opportunity, I want to make the most of it, as I am sure everyone reading this does. But I also tend to want my opportunity wrapped up with a nice bow and all I have to do is unwrap it and say "Thank you, God" Most opportunities typically don't present themselves to us that way and they sometimes come at the most inopportune times at least to our thinking.

But God is in control, He is sovereign over everything. He has plans for us, plans for good not disaster if we only trust Him. Being a Christian does not necessarily reduce our circumstantial uncertainty; spiritual uncertainty yes, unlike non-believers we know where we are headed after this life, but for our circumstances, we need to trust Him. When an opportunity comes along we don't want to be like the man with the one talent in Matthew who decides to play it safe and not become involved in a risk/reward situation. Circumstantial opportunities have risk, but they also have a reward if we only trust the Lord.

Personally, jumping on that opportunity "bull" is something that has always been hard for me, some of that is me just me being human but some of that is just because of the way I am wired. Or maybe I should say was wired, there are so many little decisions as well as some major ones that have occurred in my life in the last year or so. Some have turned out better than I thought they ever could, others not quite so much...But every single one has involved trusting God a little more, getting me more out of my comfort zone to where He wants me to be.

Ok I think I will stop typing now.... sorry this one topic turned into two rather long posts, all I started out to do was comment on a quote I read but somehow as I typed my brain went into overdrive somewhat. :o Hopefully nobody's brain exploded. I also don't want anyone to read this and go out and do something risky for the sake of randomly going after an opportunity! We have to remember there are good and bad opportunities but with the Holy Spirit's help we can have the discernment to see the difference between good and bad opportunities and to get on that potentially risky bull when it is the right thing to do.


  1. Rebecca said...

    Thanks. I needed to hear that!

    And my brain didn't explode :)