I recently had some discussions on the topic of adventure. When we say the word adventure, we often consider it as an event or activity that might break us out of our normal pattern of life. Whatever that is!
Adventure conjures up feelings of excitement, change, adrenalin, and activities that might be considered outside the norm for us. In many cases, what we once considered an adventurous activity is now part of the norm for us. For example, if you are not used to public speaking, then those first steps in grade school or high school can be considered adventurous. We put ourselves out there for all to see (and criticize) and rely on our skills and wit to get us through it. It often takes courage to even place ourselves in line for an adventure, such as getting on that roller coaster that the kids want to ride, but you really would prefer to avoid.
So adventure firstly requires a commitment and then the second stage, the follow-through. When I review my own life and this topic I often feel that adventure, or trying something new, can become a part of your journey. A willingness to take a risk, push your skill sets, explore where you don’t have a map or a guaranteed outcome all comprise of how the adventure is perceived and understood. So, this willingness can apply to our vocational and family life as well as our spiritual journey.
Rather like a child who often takes their lead in the taste of food from diets served and eaten by parents, we gradually build up a list of food types we are unwilling to try. Even when we know that food is good for us, tastes pleasant and looks great, we still refuse to try it out. This is a learned trait even in a two-year-old. When we add up our places of “don’t go there,” they become a massive list by the time we are adults.
Over time, this creates a list of places where our tastes, likes and dislikes come to govern our approach to the world based on a limited palate. This does not just affect food, relationships, social interaction but also our spiritual journey. We become judgmental on prayer types, worship venues, even who we are willing to socialize it.
This coming week perhaps we can reexamine our taste for adventure. Are we willing to try our a new prayer form? Engage in a new spiritual group? Listen to a new message? All these are signs that we have opened ourselves up to hearing what God is saying to us on the inside. Christ is with us always, but are we open for His next suggested adventure in our spiritual journey?
After all, this adventure may have been sitting there for a long time in our hearts and minds, but somehow we didn’t dare to say Yes to it. Perhaps the time to say Yes instead of No to God’s next adventure is here, all we need to do is answer it.