Does God Care About Adventure?
Recently I had the chance to climb two mountains in one day with my dad. We got lost, almost stepped on a 4 foot rattler, and climbed until our limbs were numb. It was a blast.
Waking early the morning of the climb, we made coffee in our rented RV and gathered our gear. When we stepped out of the RV, we noticed gray blue clouds swirling as the wind whistled through the trees. We had never climbed a mountain before and we knew that day we'd climb two. All swagger drifted away with each gust of wind as we pictured ourselves being blown off the mountain like paper dolls.
We made it back in one piece with memories and full hearts (hat tip to coach on Friday Night Lights). It occurred to me on the way home that God must care about adventure.
First, there is the weakness principle, meaning when we are weak we are strong (2 Cor. 12:10). We are not strong because weakness is actually strength - like opposite day. No, we are weak because our God is strong and when we look up to Him and squeak out "help" He shows up like a benevolent tornado. Adventure - real adventure - brings us to our knees as we face a weakness and we get to ask God for help.
Second, adventure tends to deliver HD vision to our lives. On the top of a mountain, you don't need to pontificate on God's majesty because you look at a 3,000 foot drop and can feel the lump of fear in your throat. God made that. The wind shoves you and you cling to the ground like a cat about to get in a bath (maybe that's just me). Adventure, be it climbing a mountain or trying public speaking stirs the chemical cocktails in our brain and intensifies our awareness. And that should increase our awareness of our God.
Third, when we put ourselves out there in the space of the unknown, humility sneaks into our hearts and sets up camp. False swagger can last for a little while, but when you're in the middle of a real adventure consisting of fear, difficulty, and risk your swag disappears like mine did at the trailhead of the mountain. Humility helps move us out of the way so we can see the Lord more clearly.
Adventure to you may be training for a half marathon, starting a business, or telling that special someone you love them for the first time. I won't define adventure for you because you know it when you see it. But my point is this - I think we need to seek adventure because through adventure we experience God.
See you out there.