I often say I want a life of adventure and the beauty here is that God is the God of adventure. Don’t believe me, just check out the lives of some of the Old Testament characters, or how bout some of the disciples lives. They all saw and did some crazy stuff, and I want in on the action.
Warning: This story terrified my parents and gave my heart a life long yearning for adventure…
When I was in elementary school we had a missionary come to our church and share her story with us. There are only a few details I remember from her story, but don’t worry they’re the good ones!
This girl, we’ll call her Sarah, did ministry to gang members in the heart of downtown Los Angeles, at night. She told us a story about how she and her group found a gang one night and began talking with them. These gang members were not welcoming and not very interested in what Sarah had to say but they listened. She got into a conversation with one man about Jesus and the great Love of the Heavenly Father for all of His children. She told the very large, unfriendly man about how Christ’s love had changed her life and how God had forgiven her sins and given her new hope.
The man’s expressionless face remained silent. Sarah said she would like to pray with this man and asked if he had any prayer requests. The man did not respond. So, Sarah, hesitantly, began to pray. She spoke to God calmly about his love and thanked him for her new hope and the love he had for the man standing before her. As Sarah was praying she heard a strange noise…
As she opened her eyes, before her was the barrel of a gun. This gang member had put a gun to her head and pulled the trigger as she was praying for him. The gun, fully loaded, did not go off. It DID NOT GO OFF. It was FULLY LOADED.
I believe, along with Sarah, that God put His finger right in that barrel and stopped that bullet from leaving the gun.
The man knew the gun was loaded. He knew he pulled the trigger. He intended to kill her. In that crazy, upside down moment, that man experienced a miracle. He knew God was there. Sarah lived to tell the story and this man lived a new life with Christ.
My parents heard that story and were never more convinced that I was not in any way shape or form to ever enter any area where gang members might exist, no matter what.
I heard that story and wanted to know where the sign up sheet was…
God is a God of miracles. He LIKES doing the impossible. He LIKES showing off His power. He LIKES adventure. He LOVES His kids.
Last Sunday was the first day of Advent. In many churches we observe the Advent season as a way to prepare our hearts and minds for the coming of Christ. Every week we look at the crazy circumstances that surrounded the birth of Jesus and the many miracles that were performed to create the perfect moment to celebrate Christmas, Jesus’ birthday.
This week we looked at Mary. She was told by an Angel that she was pregnant. She was a virgin. She was engaged to Joseph. Just right there are a million crazy things going on. An angel spoke to Mary. Mary is going to have a baby even though she is a virgin. Joseph is going to be mad. Mary is going to be shamed forever. To Mary, this is not good news. This is actually more horrible then Mary could ever imagine. Because, really, until this moment, who had ever heard of a young girl getting pregnant by Immaculate Conception? And Mary had never met anyone who’d talked to an Angel. In that moment Mary’s life changed FOREVER. And I mean FOREVER. Not just, oh, this is kind of a big deal but everyone will forget about it when someone else does something crazy. Oh no, we’re still talking about this one 2000 years later and the whole world STILL knows about it…
How’s that for adventure?
If you could do ANYTHING in the next 10 years what would you do? I’m talking ANYTHING. You have all the money in the world, everything is possible, all you have to do is go for it. What adventures would you want to experience in these next 10 years?
And now, for the challenge…
Ask God for those things. Ask God where He wants to take you. Ask Him to give you BIG dreams and then to help you fulfill them. God tells us over and over that NOTHING is impossible through Him. I want a life of adventure. It may be scary and it will often be uncertain, there will DEFINITELY be people who say you’re crazy and that you can’t do it. So what?! Go for it! You can tell them all about it in 10 years!