Motherhood is all about risk; the whole affair is riddled with the weighty stuff. To be frank, as a mother, risk starts at the conception of your first child and ends when you die.
Risk is real, but here’s the crazy thing, it’s where all the goodness and possibility lies.
Safety is an illusion.
We can’t even keep ourselves alive; that is totally and completely God’s territory. We can’t breath without the infusion of His Spirit into our lungs day in and day out. We are not in control; it’s epically freeing to sort this out and move on out into the adventure of actually being alive, of actually using all this breath for something bigger than ourselves and our petty comforts.
And yet, it can be so tempting to think that we can manage and control every eventuality and potential problem. I’m not sure if this is vanity, or fear, or insanity, but really it indicates a life determined to do things the easy way.
But, that’s the lie, there is no easy way; we either move forward in fear or we move forward in risk.
The way through life is difficult, it is tough, it’ll wring you out like a wet sandy beach towel.
It can feel so much easier to settle into the the grooves of worry, complacency, comfort, or the known, instead of marching boldly into the vision that God has written on our heart and an absolutely remarkable future, because we prefer the illusion of safety that appears to hold risk at bay. But, illusions have no substance.
I’m struggling through this right now, even as I anticipate launching into something very new and very scary for me, I swing back to thinking, maybe it’s just easier not to try this new adventure. It’s so much easier to live under a rock. Nobody laughs at you when you hide under a rock, because nobody sees you. Something about being different, about being seen exposes us… and exposure can feel frightening, because then… there’s no more hiding.
Then, however, we never become who we were destined to be; we trade our inheritance for a handful of beans.
Risk doesn’t let us hide.
Is it risky to have another child? Absolutely. Some people will laugh at you, others will get mad at you, others will roll their eyes. But is there anything more absolutely glorious than growing up with your own band of ragamuffins, as you learn God, and the world, and the wonder of heavenly things together while you yet live?
Is it risky to jump off of whatever bandwagon you grew up on and pursue a new dream with your family: how you educate, feed, discipline, or train up your children? Absolutely. People will gossip about you, some will misunderstand you, and others will role their eyes (again).
But even amidst all this risk, in the muck of sorting out your path and learning who you really are aside from the opinions of others and the swoon of a domineering culture, you will find sure footing. Because that is what faith is; it is the risk of leaping into a place that God promises to meet you, even though you can’t yet see it clearly. You will climb a mountain that has not yet been named, and you will tame it and know that you went where others were too fearful to tread, because you chose life.
You chose freedom.
You stepped out into the wild spaces of faith, away from the jabbering manipulation of the news media, the fear trolls, and dream-crushers, and found there a weightier glory, a more beautiful story than you could ever have imagined… all because you embraced risk.
Invite risk in; play around, experiment, and laugh on the journey. Oddly enough, you’ll find you were never safer, because now, not only is your breath in the hands of your Creator, but your whole life is as well.