When I reflect on my life and what the Lord has been showing me lately, I am compelled to take note of the amazing things that happen when I choose to take a risk—to take a step of faith and trust God with the results. My natural tendency in life is to want to play it safe. If I find a method that works, why should I change it? After all, if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it—right?
If it ain’t broke, it might be because it ain’t broke yet; however, we need to be in tune with the way things are going and what will happen if we continue on the same route we’re on indefinitely. Just because something works now, it doesn’t mean it will work forever. For this reason, we need to be intentional about stepping out of the box and doing things in unconventional ways. Unconventional things lead to uncomfortable feelings; yet, these feelings of discomfort are good and healthy and drive us to greater success.
Why wait until something breaks before you fix it? Why not proactively find a better way to do something ahead of time so that the thing will not break in the first place?
The Lord has challenged me many times to stretch myself and do uncomfortable things. He has been revealing to me the value of taking risks. And you know what? Some of my greatest victories in life have come out of some of my greatest risks. You know what else? Some of my greatest failures have also come out of my greatest risks. However, the key to rebounding from these failures is to give ourselves more grace, not take ourselves too seriously, and say at the end of the day, “Well, at least I tried! And I’ll do better next time!”
Our perfection-minded society has put a damper on our ability to take risks. We fear risks because we fear failure. However, one of the best ways to learn is to fail—and then try again. Rather than pointing fingers at each other when we fail after taking a risk, we should have an entirely different attitude. We should honor one another and commend each other for trying. We need to do a much better job of creating safe environments for one another to take risks—to take steps of faith. How many times do we point our fingers at Peter because he started sinking while he walked on the water? Have we forgotten that he was the only one bold enough to take the risk and get out of the boat?
Having experienced the joys and trials of taking risks, my goal is to continue moving forward with an attitude of taking more risks and conquering my fears. In that, my goal is also to create an atmosphere wherever I go where it is safe for others to do the same. With this perspective, it is more important for me to celebrate the process than the outcome.
We too often confuse excellence and perfection. Excellence is doing everything to the best of our ability, to the glory of God. Perfection is doing everything we can to protect our image. We can’t take risks with an attitude of perfectionism, but we certainly can and should take risks with an attitude of excellence. When we have an attitude of excellence, we will take risks with excellence. At times, we will fail with excellence. But ultimately, we will learn, grow, and succeed with excellence.
These are just a few of my thoughts.