Have you tested the limits of what you thought you were capable of doing? Maybe played with fire and not quite got burned. Or maybe you feel you have cheated death a time or two and count your blessings. There are lots of ways you can live life on the edge, but if you keep testing the limits, there may be a time you trip over the edge and don’t land on your feet. One thing that comes to mind when we think of pushing the limits are extreme sports. People have been pushing the limits of what we thought was possible since the beginning of time, only more recently with video running. Whether it is trying to survive a trip over Niagara Falls, landing bigger and more dangerous jumps, skydiving without a parachute, or flying at over 100 mph within inches of a mountain, there is always someone willing to try something new. The thing with extreme sports is that once you do what was once impossible regularly, it is no longer extreme. It is a constantly moving target of everyone trying to one-up each other and taking it to a new and more intense level each time, until you find out that you have reached your limits and end up severely injured or dead. Maybe you are not testing your limits by trying to cheat death in a dramatic way, but where do you take risks in life?
For the Spirit God gave us does not make us timid, but gives us power, love and self-discipline. 2 Timothy 1:7
Everything we do in life involves some level of risk. The chance of being killed by a terrorist is much less than flying on a plane, which is much less than driving across town, yet our fear of these things is likely the opposite. We all have variable levels of fear in our lives which dictates what risks we are willing to take. Just look at your friends and family and we can surely find some lives which went in a direction that no one intended. Experimenting with smoking, alcohol, or other drugs can easily lead to a life of addiction and impaired health. The lure of lust has led some to risk their marriage by cheating on a spouse directly, with wandering eyes, or through pornography. Or we may think no one will notice if we take a little extra of what is not ours to pad our wallet. Every time we spend or save the money God gave us can lead us toward poverty or more greed without much effort. There are choices we make each day which can lead us down the wrong trail or the high road. What guides your decisions?
The earth is the Lord’s, and everything in it, the world, and all who live in it. Psalm 24:1
What if we were designed to take risks? The bible is full of examples of people, when called, to boldly go where no man had gone before. Noah, Abraham, Moses, Jonah, Paul and others were led by God to step out in their faith to do what seemed foolish to the common man. Christ took on the role of a servant to the point of death, when he had the power to choose anything else. These are our examples of stepping out in faith to live honorably before God and man. Yet we have examples of this in our own lives. There are veterans living among us, and some who are not, who risked their lives to protect the freedoms we hold dear. There are neighbors who gave up a high paying job to give more to their family, or to go into a ministry. Where have you stepped out in faith and taken a risk to answer a call God had given you?
Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be frightened, and do not be dismayed, for the Lord your God is with you wherever you go. Joshua 1:9
Challenge yourself in ways that will edify you instead of kill you. You can take small risks every day that will save lives instead of destroy them. Get up 30 minutes earlier to pray. See how fast or how often you can read through the bible. Challenge yourself to say 10 kind things to others each day. Give more than you thought was possible. Share the gospel with someone, even if you think they are a lost cause. Take steps to go down the path you hear God calling you and leave behind the selfish world of the flesh. Taking the risk to follow God may cause you to lose your life, but it will be worth it!
For whoever wants to save their life will lose it, but whoever loses their life for me will find it. Matthew 16:25
Blessings in Christ,