There are some people who live dangerously. No I’m not talking about jumping out of an airplane with nothing between you and the ground but a parachute which you hope will open. I’m not talking about participating in the annual Sweetwater, Texas rattlesnake roundup. We went one year. Uhhh–nothing quite like it.
Right now, I am thinking about the danger of playing it safe. The following are some dangers I have in mind. Do you have some others to add?
1. The danger of staying the same. Don’t grow. Don’t move. Just stay where you are. Never change your habits or the way you use your time. Stay the same. Be your same predictable self. Close your mind to anything new, different, or untried. That can be a very dangerous way to live.
2. The danger of playing it safe. "Who me? No I can’t do that." Why? "What if I fail? What will I do?" Far too many people are determined to play it safe. Far too many churches are so interested in playing it safe that they say "no" to opportunities for ministry before them. This attitude is putting many churches at great risk! Why? Playing it safe is often a rationalization. If I play it safe then you don’t have to trust God. That can be a dangerous way to live.
3. The danger of avoiding risk. Perhaps your teens are talking about going to a mission field or working with the poor in some distant American city. "Wait! You can’t do that. We want you to live near us! We would miss you if you were that far away!" So, a teenager’s vision is doused with cold water because mom and dad have no such vision themselves.
4. The danger of avoiding pain at all costs. Of course, no one likes to experience pain. Yet, one can go to such lengths to avoid pain that it becomes dangerous. Mom and Dad can’t stand to hear their four year old whine and throw a tantrum that they bribe the child with toys, ice cream, etc. Perhaps mom or dad can’t stand to see their child worry about her ticket so they rush in to pay it themselves. Consistently removing the natural consequences of our children’s behavior can be very dangerous in the long run.
5. The danger of avoiding any discussion about "the big pink elephant in the middle of the room." A family has a troubled son or daughter. At Christmas, the daughter never shows up. No call. No explanation. Nothing! However, the family never mentions it and goes on with Christmas. Her packages under the tree. Her plate and silverware on the table. Ice tea is next to her plate. Yet nothing is ever said. The "big pick elephant in the middle of the room" is ignored. Are you ignoring something that really ought to be addressed?
Can you think of others?