Too Dangerous to Play it Safe

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?

Please note: I reserve the right to delete comments that are offensive or off-topic.

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11 thoughts on “Too Dangerous to Play it Safe

  1. Gee, Jim. You hit all of the “big five” that counselors deal with.
    Do you also have a psychology degree? 🙂
    I might add: The danger of
    always accepting other
    peoples’ opinions and never forming one of your own, including about yourself and the danger of
    not giving or recieving love for fear of being rejected. Shalom..

  2. Hmmmm … seems a lot of churches excell in all of these!
    My daughter has taught me more about this subject (in a good way) as she walks out her faith in a far more “dangerous” way than I dared to do.

    Good stuff … as usual.

  3. Great post, Jim. I believe it really applies to the church. The Church of Christ is a church that has traditionally “played it safe”. How many times have we heard, “It may not be wrong, but it is safer not to do it.”? Playing it safe sure drags down faith, doesn’t it?
    Thanks for the post, Jim

  4. Jim,
    Yes, I think playing it safe does try to avoid faith at times. Good judgement and wisdom are quiet different from always trying to avoid relying on God.

  5. Jim,

    Its also interesting how many non-christians live “safely” agianst the “threat” of Christianity, (a perceived change for the worse?).

    I’m surrounded by people who play it safe, and excel in saying it safe. I’m tired of non-confrontational discussions that should be challenging and changing for all parties involved, but end up weak and “safe” where nothing ever changes!

  6. dcypl,
    What an interesting observation you make! It is interesting how many non-christians live “safely” against the “threat” of Christianity.

    How dangerous…and sad…

  7. dcypl,
    (That one got away too soon!) How dangerous to see the safe, impotent faith that offers little risk and I’m afraid, very little Jesus at times. And it also strikes me as sad. Especially since God has given us the stewardship of the Gospel…