Wednesday, December 28, 2011

On Climbing Without a Rope and Risk

I like sure things.

That's why Alex Honnald's story baffles me. He climbs without ropes, without climbing gear, without anything more than his bare hands. Oh, and this guy isn't climbing trees. He climbs 1,600 foot rock walls. Not so much of a sure thing.


In the full segment aired on 60 Minutes, an expert says it's only a matter of time before Alex falls and when one falls from 1,600 feet, the only thing waiting at the bottom is death.

Crazy, for sure. Thoughts to ponder, you bet.

I talk about dreams quite a bit, and Alex's climbing reminds me of dreams and risks. If we climb to our dreams too quickly, we slip and fall. We are too inexperienced, not ready. If we climb too slowly, our arms give out from exhaustion. We tire of pushing forward day after day.

And then there's the idea of risk. Not climb-up-the-face-of-the-mountain-kind-of-risk (yes, yes, I agree, Alex is crazy), but risk still the same. When we are young, risk proves easy. Fewer people look to us for stability. Fewer bills came addressed in our name.

For me, risk isn't physical risk.

Risk means starting a blog and sending out stories and bits of myself. It's easier to say writing is hard, and rejection is frequent, and I don't have time.

Risk means entering in situations with people different than me. It's easier to surround myself with people like me, people who live like me and drive cars like me and laugh at my jokes because well, they are like me.

Risk means pushing ahead because God tells me to and not because I feel like it. Just like Alex, I'm "pasting my feet to the ceiling and hoping they stick".

Question for you: When is the last time you took a risk? What big or small risks are you taking now?

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13 comments:

lori said...

I saw that episode, and it was crazy, but you're right about the risk thing. Right now, I feel like we're taking huge risks planning a church plant in a community we left three years ago. If we're crazy then, so be it. God will have to make miracles for it all to come together, and I'm ready for them. Thank you, sweet friend, for encouragement. I need to jump back into writing, too. I actually posted today. Wow, right? Love you!

Mary said...

My biggest risk right now is writing a book. Scared to death, quite honestly. But I need the challenge. I need to step out in faith.

Happy New Year, sweet friend. Love you much! xxx

Gaby said...

Adopting a toddler from Haiti is the biggest risk we've taken as a family. But you know what is scarier for me? To talk to a non-believing friend about Jesus. THAT terrifies me. Odd, huh? Maybe it's because adopting from Haiti is a risk that has met with more approval than disapproval, while speaking about Christ in our world is not always welcomed. I need to think about this now...

Michelle said...

Risks of putting ourselves out there are hard. It is way to easy to sink into our comfortable places. God calls us to trust Him and just this is a risk. To follow Him completely and allow Him to guide us no matter what others think is risky and hard but worth it. This is the risk I take to be open with others about my walk and my relationship with God.

HopeUnbroken said...

i'm not a natural risk-taker. always been the "good girl", the one who wanted to please. that's how i kept people happy, and that's how i stayed safe.
but God.
and i find myself with four kids, and how in the world do you teach them about a God who calls us to take care of the poor and the needy and the orphaned. . . all the while staying "safe?"
so i pray. and hard. going through the adoption process with our youngest was the riskiest things i've ever done.
and every day since i've been praying that God would continue to give me a spirit of courage and wisdom and bravery to take the risks that He calls me to and enables me to do.
some days, quite frankly, all that requires is getting out of bed.
steph

Stephanie said...

Risk taker I am not. Full of fear, I am. Of Failure. Your words always strike a chord with my heart. Tired of ordinary Christianity and surrendering to the pull of the Lord, I prayed this prayer 8 months ago:
"Lord, take me out of my comfort zone. Do things I am not used to. Put me in over my head."

My life has not been the same since. He is not slow in answering such cries of the heart! And, with all my heart, I prayed the same prayer again this week.

If my feet continue to stick to the ceiling, it is the Lord holding them there! If my feet let go, I know He will catch me.

Jean Wise said...

I am NOT a risk taker and certainly not like this rock climber. Interesting though to read your blog and the word risk as I am praying and pondering goals for next years. Found myself setting very safe goals and not God sized ones. Now I am trying to be more open, take the risk and actually write down a few really big ideas. Yes I feel scared, Yes I feel vulnerable, Yes I am fall ( hopefully not to my death) but won't know unless I try, right? Thanks for helping me along the way, Amy!

Jenilee said...

stepping out into what God has for us in this next year is going to be an opportunity to trust God like we never have before... great post!

Jennifer @ GettingDownWithJesus.com said...

Yes, risk is hard, because it involves rejection. That's been big for me ... to step out there anyway. To be obedient, even if I fall flat on my face. (Which I've done.)

Rachel M. said...

Well I got one in the works but I can't talk about it until it happens. Until then, yeah for risk! It's fun!!

Amy Sullivan said...

Ladies,
Your risks gave me chills: church planting, book writing, adoption, and "put me in over my head". I want to risk like you. All of you.

Susan DiMickele said...

This freaks me out, but in a good way! I was just getting ready to write a post about dreams, so your timing is good.

Writing is a risk for me. Yep, you are putting yourself out there Amy and taking a risk -- and I am so thankful you are!

Set Free From Me said...

Amy, thanks for checking out our blog. I love this post a whole lot. I just linked my last post to facebook and that was pretty scary. I spent about 4 seconds thinking of the people who might read it that I didn't really want to before I hit share link. The other risk I am taking is opening our home for foster care. This will be the last month before our family changes forever!
Monica

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