Not too long ago someone inquired: “Tell me about your greatest adventure.” I think they wanted to know about far away places and ‘daring do’, that which put me right on the edge of life and death. Quite quickly I mentally indexed a list of such events and I did not mention one of them. Why not mention them? Because, I started to think about the dynamics involved in a good adventure and that is where the intrigue lies. If we just look at events, without understanding dynamics…..one person’s adventure can be another person’s walk in the park. And this, quite quickly devolves into one story trying to out do another story…. male macho banter.
A good adventure lives at the intersection where excitement and uncertainty/fear meet. There is something about the situation that challenges us to engage with the totality of who we are….we are totally present to the given moment. Therefore, we are focused and fully alive!
We also know, deep down, that we may or may not successfully negotiate the situation. We might be a raging success or we might be a total failure. The potential for success and the potential for complete failure is a significant part of what makes an event an adventure. It is living into the risk of failure and/or rejection that invites the grandest of all adventures.
At this point, climbing a frozen water fall might be much easier than walking into an AA meeting. Floating the Grand Canyon might be a paddle on a pond compared to working on your marriage. Helicopter skiing in British Columbia might be a gentle swish in the park compared to teaching a Sunday school class.
So, what allows us to dare greatly? to risk significantly? to embrace life fully?
We must come to realize that our success and/or our failure does not define us. What defines us and what allows us to live into the adventure of being vibrantly alive is the God who made us. You see, He made me in His image. He called me into a relationship. As I respond to that call, he indwells me with His spirit. I become an agent of His incomprehensible grace in a hurting world. I can risk greatly because my inner self is wrapped up in Him! It is not wrapped up in my performance!
What grand adventure have you been called to undertake? Does it wake you up early and command all of your attention? Does it engage you so that you are vibrantly alive? Are you compelled to dare greatly!
Go for it!!