It has been a special privilege of mine in recent years to be able to take the Memorial Day weekend to ride my motorcycle on an extended trip. I find myself anticipating the adventure long before I warm up that big V-Twin to take off down the road, I have dreamt of the hours seeing the majestic vistas, sweeping curves and wildlife that we are privileged to enjoy in Alaska. Willie Nelson’s popular song, “On The Road Again” is the tune I find myself humming over and over and then burst out singing, “I can’t wait to get on the road again” because those are the only words I have ever bothered to remember to that song. It’s the journey I look forward to, the discovery, the new adventure, it’s worth the risk.
A new adventure. We all crave one. Sometimes we crave getting “out there” somewhere in life but are too afraid to take whatever risk there might be associated with our longing. It might be an adventure in striking up a new relationship. It might be an adventure in going back to school. It might be an adventure of changing places of employment. If we could only get past that fear factor.
Someone recently came to my office in tears and spilled out their story of loss of jobs, relationships, a house, car and sense of purpose. They had come to the end of themselves and had a hard landing on hitting bottom. It was only in that moment that they began to reconsider their choices and direction in life. They had realized they were not “bullet proof” and needed help. For the first time in their life they were considering how Jesus might be what they had missed in their downward spiral. Before this difficult time in their lives they were too afraid of what criticism they might receive from others if they comitted to a relationship with Jesus. Now alone and near despair, the risk was not so frightening. It was time to make the move. They made the decision to begin a new adventure, a new journey with Jesus.
Jesus many years ago confronted some bored and restless fishermen on the shores of the Sea of Galilee mending their nets. Reading between the lines, they must have been wondering if there was any more to life than what they already knew. With a single invitation, they left the only life they had ever known and were off on the adventure of their life:
19 Then He said to them, “Follow Me, and I will make you fishers of men.” 20 They immediately left their nets and followed Him.
Miracles, blinded eyes opened, lame legs walking again, 5000 people fed by a boys small lunch, lepers cleansed, the crucified Jesus, the risen Lord. It changed their lives when they took the risk to follow Jesus. It was a life-long adventure.
What would you do if you were not afraid to do it? What fear is holding you back in life? What new adventure are you longing for? You, like many others, might consider beginning a new adventure, a new journey with Jesus. He can change your life if you are willing to risk.
Rev. Stephen Brown is pastor of the Kenai New Life Assembly of God in Kenai.