Archive for June 2010
You can’t safely risk something. Sure you can make a calculated risk, but the definition “hazard: a source of danger; a possibility of incurring loss or misfortune” suggests there is no safety. Funny though, I took a risk today and feel safety. I moved into the house we will be using to build up our 28 Ethiopian boys who currently are staying on the street or in barely sheltering mud huts. I left the comfort zone and close friends I made on the other side of Addis Ababa.
Though there are no safe risks I will argue that we are able to take risks safely. I think in my growing up I have really learned the value of risks and what they mean to my faith. What gives us an opportunity to risk safely is our faith. We all have faith in something. I feel fortunate though that my faith lies in an omnipotent God. So when I take risks, my safety lies in a God that has all the power. It can almost be argued that when we have faith in him, there really are no risks because he can do it all. That isn’t true though, in my faith I take risks that are not safe based on the worlds view. It isn’t safe for me to quit a solid career, leave my family, leave my comfort zone, and not have clear plans for the next 20 years. That is per the world, but in with my faith I can trust that these humanly risks are safely protected by an all powerful God. (oops, sound like a preacher, but whatever).
As I continue to grow up I am learning that not only should I not be afraid of risks, but really my life NEEDS risks. I am realizing that I need to find a healthy way to make sure I am seeking quality risks. I am learning that without risks, I can’t even call my spirituality faith; instead it just turns into religion. It turns into a routine, narcissistic, ineffective way of life. When I take risk out of the equation I deprive myself of a true faith which brings me closer to God and closer to being a strong man.
For the last couple months I began to forget this principle in my life. There was and is so much telling us we can’t do this and that to help our boys. Each 1 yes seems to be followed by 10 no’s. I began to listen to those things and began waiting on all the answers before moving. That was the safe way. Of course, some of this waiting was necessary because by no means should any of our risk jeopardize the future of our boys. So what happened during these couple months? Well, I can admit that my relationship with God was depleted, my insecurities grew, my relationships struggled, and I struggled with temptations.
So somewhat out of the blue last Friday we decided to stop waiting for every answer. These boys need us now; in fact they needed us a year ago. Maybe moving to the boys house doesn’t sound like much, but it is another pretty large step out of my comfort zone. I will be just about the only white person in the new neighborhood. There is a potential for less comfort and more violence. BUT, I can tell you I already feel back on track with my relationship with God. I feel inspired and ready to GO! We also set a date for which we plan on actually starting daily programs at the house for the kids. Due to legal reasons they can’t move in yet, but we have no more excuses for not building them up with tutoring, counseling and a lot more.
This will put an interesting twist on my trip to America this Friday. When I leave DC in two weeks I will be coming back to, again, an unfamiliar place. I pray I come back with the same attitude I had last September. I pray for a refreshed and challenged mind upon my return. I can’t wait to see family and friends again. It’s just incredible that it has been 9 months since I have seen them. Funny, but I am already looking forward to returning to Ethiopia and making progress.
I look forward to the rewards following this risk. I am excited for what God is going to do. We all need to take risks, to be living in faith and have a enriched life!