by Molly Dillon / Keizer Campus Principal
Risk-taking is not in my nature; nevertheless, I am occasionally drawn to experiences that force me out of my comfort zone. I was presented with such an opportunity recently, where I voluntarily squeezed myself into a harness, tethered to a cable 829 feet above the ground, and jumped. It wasn’t the result of a dare, or to prove anything, my reasoning was rather simplistic; I thought jumping off of a building would be fun. That thought was seriously challenged as I heard the countdown “Three… two… one…”
I am not content living a predictable, ordinary life. I am committed to God’s plan for the extraordinary life that comes with tethering to Christ, accepting the risks clearly stated in Matthew 16:24-25, “Whoever wants to be my disciple must deny themselves and take up their cross and follow me. For whoever wants to save their life will lose it, but whoever loses their life for me will find it.” Not surprising, it has been a rollercoaster of mountaintop and valley experiences, profound and painful seasons in which God called me out of my comfort zone, stretching and strengthening my trust and faith.
God loves risk takers, and for our encouragement, the Bible beautifully describes all of their stories. God’s beloved have risked being lied about, reviled, persecuted or killed, yet were all blessed “for your reward is great in heaven” (Matthew 5:11-12). Those who decided the risks were too costly and turned away had very different stories. Their risk-aversion greatly impacted the lives of many, and they missed the miracles God surely had in store for them.
Working out our salvation is a risky endeavor, yet Jesus removed the eternal risk so we may live in confidence and kingdom-mindedness. Through faithfully engaging in the work of discipleship, we are equipped to do the work God has prepared for us. Discipleship takes us out of our comfort zone into God-ordained areas of risk: witnessing to family, admitting failure or weakness, forgiving the “unforgivable”, loving others like Jesus, learning to “walk by faith, not by sight” (2 Corinthians 5:7). And when we are called into these areas of courageous obedience, we are assured the victory and spiritual growth amidst the struggle.
Right in line with many of my struggles and God-ordained leaps, my exit from the Sky Jump platform was not graceful. Nevertheless, becoming a projectile on a 40mph trajectory did prove to be exhilarating and fun. Would I do it again? Definitely, but at this point I am looking forward to the exhilarating and risky leaps of faith God had planned, so His glory may be revealed in my life and through my testimony.
What area of risk is God calling you to?
– Molly Dillon / Keizer Campus Principal