....and then, the cars start to move, and I am in absolute ecstasy. As we fly around corners and loops and upside down, I cannot believe I ever resisted in the first place. What freedom! What joy! What a RUSH! At the end of the ride, I hesitantly get off, and can't wait to get in another line to go again. I'm always amazed at the difference from my demeanor at the first ride of the day and that of the ones that follow:
On the first ride, I am holding on for dear life, as though hurtling through the atmosphere at that speed could possibly be affected by my weak hand strength on the bar across my chest. My desperate attempts at self-protection are laughable at best. I can no more ensure that I can keep my own self in the seat than I can fly around the track on my own power. By the end of the day, however, my hands are up in the air as soon as the car starts moving! I have somehow build a sense of trust and security with the engineers, the equipment, and the laws of inertia and I am having a blast!
That gets me thinking about the last few weeks. Spiritually, I have a pretty low-risk life right now. It's that way by design, I must admit. I have purposely not been putting my neck out because I am still licking my wounds from the last year. I am holding back from investing all the way in the people and ministries because, frankly, WHAT IF?!?! What if I trust in a leadership, and they disappoint me? What if I make friends and they hurt me? (spoiler alert: they totally will) What if I get involved in ministry and find myself with too much on my plate, too much drama, too much.... bluckitude?
As I was chatting this over with God last week as I prayed for other people's kids every day for a week, (that post is here, in case you missed it) I noticed that my prayers have changed over the last few months. A while ago, I was praying prayers that would indicate that I wasn't serving in children's ministry because I was still healing, and wasn't called. Now, however, my prayers sounded more like I am .... scared.
If I am perfectly honest... and I may as well be at this point... for me at this juncture, my fear is mainly rooted deeply in a lack of trust. The true thought I'm thinking is: "What if I risk and God doesn't protect me?"
I should know better by now, really. I have been protected through much bigger things than volunteering to do something that I love to do for a God that I love in a church that I am growing to really love. My self-protection is not fooling anyone, and it's unnecessary. It's time to do what I'm called to do. This is nothing but a little, teensy leap of faith, and by hiding out, I am doing nobody any good. Furthermore, I am going to miss the thrill of the ride.
So, this week, I did it. I braved up, I sat in the seat, and I pulled the safety bar of God's grace and goodness down over my head (much less risky than those man-made safety bars on non-metaphorical roller coasters). I sent an email to the person in charge of Children's Ministry and made an appointment to chat with her a little bit to see what God might be up to with using me back in CM after a very long break. We're all set for Monday afternoon.
I get it. It's just a conversation. It's just a chance to see if I can be used in any way. It's just a tiny little risk... but it's a good start, I think. A way to remind myself that God can be trusted- especially to take care of us when He calls.
It's been a long time since I risked anything spiritually so I anticipate that there will be a little terror to be had. However, I do think I'm just about ready to throw my hands up and fly around a few loops and re-experience the joy of what it feels like to risk even small things for Jesus..... WHOOOOOO HOOOOOO!
I will say of the Lord, “He is my refuge and my fortress; My God, in Him I will trust.”
I'll keep you posted!