Are You Afraid to Take Risks?

“Far better is it to dare mighty things, to win glorious triumphs even though checkered by failure than to rank with those poor spirits who neither enjoy nor suffer much because they live in the gray twilight that knows neither victory nor defeat.” Teddy Roosevelt

When a quarterback drops back to pass, the one thing he doesn’t want to do is to throw an interception. Unfortunately, in the heat of the battle, what a quarterback wants and what actually happens to the pigskin may be two different things. The possibility of an interception shouldn’t keep him from throwing the ball, though. An experienced quarterback is quick and decisive. Of course, there’s always the risk, but nothing ventured, nothing gained.

A successful passer has to constantly refine and perfect his skills while taking some risks. It takes practice and commitment, throwing the pigskin into very tight spots; accuracy is essential. Great quarterbacks aren’t born; they’re made. Success comes from devotion, a great deal of hard work and the refinement of great mentors—coaches that help shape and mold these young men into valuable players.

So it is with being a disciple. Jesus is perpetually perfecting the saints for the work of ministry. You and I, as disciples, are called to live like Christ and make other disciples who can, in turn, live like Christ and make other disciples. Discipleship is apprenticeship—the process of sharing, encouraging, modeling, teaching, listening, and serving. Living like Christ and leading others comes from devotion to God’s mission, time in the Word, and time with God. And it takes practice! Representing Christ doesn’t just come naturally. If we’re not grounded in truth and yielded to our Great Mentor, our best efforts can be misguided, misunderstood, intercepted, and even used by the enemy.

I love what Ken Carpenter, editor for Spirit of Revival magazine, has to say about discipleship: “Discipleship is a process. God’s desire is to etch into our lives the imprint of His Son, Jesus. He is responsible for the construction process of making us like Christ. But He needs yielded, available individuals willing to be shaped, molded, and carved by His hands.” And so it is.

Speaking truth and leading others to a saving knowledge of Christ can feel risky, but the victory is so sweet! The daily practice of living a Christ-like life will help keep us from having our intentions and actions intercepted by the evil one. Thankfully, God’s grace cuts through our own inadequacies. He just asks for a heart that is fully devoted to Him and willing to take the risk!

The Power of Truth:
“Yet, O LORD, you are our Father. We are the clay, you are the potter; we are all the work of your hand.” Isa. 64:8

“But solid food is for the mature, who by constant use have trained themselves to distinguish good from evil.” Heb. 5:14

“…in all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make your paths straight.” Prov. 3:6

Suggestion for Prayer:
Yield yourself to God. Devote yourself to His purpose. Determine to practice a Christ-like life, spending time in God’s Word and seeking God’s guidance. Ask Him for the courage to speak the truth boldly.