Life Wrapped In Risk

Monday March 18, 2013


What are you afraid of?

What do you dread?

I could make an exhaustive list, and most of the subjects of that list would be my family. I’ve felt a mom’s pain at her child’s wounding. I’ve even watched my son take exhausting, faltering steps at the age of 24. I’d do an awful lot to never see my loved ones suffer.

But I know it’s inevitable; we live in a fallen world.

How do we live a life wrapped in risk?

By promise.

I just read devoured Rosaria Champagne Butterfield’s memoir, The Secret Thoughts of an Unlikely Convert, and it has given me so much to ponder. It’s a short read, but it’s dense. I expect a shallow memoir would be easy to gloss over, but this one contains so much I’ve already gone back to reread with a pencil in hand.

Rosaria speaks specifically to living a life wrapped in risk when she writes about motherhood. None of us is promised anything in this life, and a mom’s life can change in an instant.

What gets us through?

Promise.

Butterfield writes poignantly of the loss and gain of adoption and motherhood, neither of which is an easy, rose-filled path:

“When God gives a childless couple a child of any age using the means of his powerful will, he has just moved a mountain in the hearts and families of men. When mountains move, the earth shakes. When you stand as close as we have to real life miracles, you will get roughed up. Mountains are big and we are small. A moving mountain can crush us. Splinters fall from the cross. They travel a long distance and they pierce the skin—maybe even the heart. And wrapped in this risk and danger is God’s embrace and promise to work all things (even evil ones) to the good of those who love him.”

The promise?

“And we know that God causes all things to work together for good to those who love God, to those who are the called according to his purpose” (Romans 8:28).

As Rosaria goes on to point out, this doesn’t make us Pollyannas. We can’t deny the “razor edges of a fallen and broken world.” Our lot is to take the bitter with the sweet. And the difference between the two? Our perspective. Our worldview. Sharing His perspective makes all the difference.

If we never step outside the personal experience we have crafted—the life we want for ourselves— we’ll never get His perspective. When we let go and let God take hold of our lives, we “exceed ourselves as we stretch to Him.”

Will you join me as I stand on the promise … and stretch toward Him?


I'm linking up with Laura, Michelle, and Jen today.

Photo credit

8 comments:

Janis Cox said...

Hi,
I am following you from Michelle's.
God's promises. I was given a list of promises found in the Bible - I read through each one - I think there were over 30. It was an excellent exercise in building trust.
Blessings,
Janis

Barbara H. said...

I just finished this book recently (reviewed it here: http://barbarah.wordpress.com/2013/03/07/book-review-the-secret-thoughts-of-an-unlikely-convert/). I think it is going to go down as one of my top ten of the year. I appreciated that in every facet of her life, when she confronted truth head-on, she didn't try to skirt around it or soften it. She faced it and responded.

I think we tend to be risk-avoiders by nature, and though I have experienced God's grace and help and upholding while stepping out of my "safe" zone, I'm still reluctant to do so. I need to keep my eyes on Him and not on myself and my wants.

Jen Ferguson said...

Oh, girl. Without God's perspective, I don't know where I'd be, but certainly not here. Life with risk is hard, but rewarding. It's scary, but not completely overwhelming when we know that God is holding our hand.

And yes, I will stand on the promise with you.

Shonya said...

Wasn't that book outstanding?! I read it quickly as well, then roped a friend into reading it, read it again, and we spent hours discussing it at Perkins! :) That was a hard review to write because there was just so much in it.

But yes, I've certainly seen the Lord keep His promise!

Shonya said...

http://www.learninghowmuchidontknow.blogspot.com/2013/03/secret-thoughts.html

There's my review, by the way.

GLENDA CHILDERS said...

Yes, sorta!

Fondly,
Glenda

Faith said...

Risk taking and stretching more toward Him and His purposes? YES...am so trying to do more of that this year with whatever He puts in my path...my oldest daughter is learning to do this as well. she was my hesitant one from birth til about age 7 and NOT a risk taker at all....so opposite of my youngest. Now, we are all reaching out to His purposes and plans in different ways and in different areas that He wants to stretch us. This sounds like a book I would enjoy....I like deep!! thanks for sharing on this!!

Beth said...

Fears? Well, I have more than I care to admit, but I LOVE what you've said here, "We exceed ourselves as we stretch to Him.” I think that's a visual that I'm going to tuck inside my heart today, Laura Lee. You've blessed me, my friend!

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