Risk Taker or Cautionary? Which Are You?

When you look up the word, risk, the definition is all about danger or hazards.

But does it have to be? John Spacey writes in 7 Examples of a good risk that “a good risk is a risk that is attractive from the perspective of a society, organization or individual that it is taken in a calculated and managed way. All actions and inactions involve risk. As such, it is incorrect to think of risk as inherently bad”.

As I became an adult, my risk-taking ability grew. As the mom of 2 boys, I wanted to be the “cool” boy mom so I had to be willing to do what my boys would do. And I did many things. Bungee jumping is one of them. I have to say, I wasn’t a fan! The whole up and down, losing my stomach with each movement was about more than I could stand.

Reminds me much of life, the ups and downs! We plan on parachuting together one day also and at 60, I better get to planning that. The difference will be once I lose my stomach, I won’t lose it again. Life is not like that, to move forward I must be willing to take risks, and risk-taking precedes ups and downs or losing my stomach.

Even the bible gives strong examples of risk taking.

Ecclesiastes 11:4-6 He who observes the wind will not sow, and he who regards the clouds will not reap. As you do not know the way the spirit comes to the bones in the womb of a woman with child, so you do not know the work of God who makes everything. In the morning sow your seed, and at evening withhold not your hand, for you do not know which will prosper, this or that, or whether both alike, will be good.

Have you ever thought, “Why am I here? What is God’s plan for me?” God created us all unique and with purpose. A purpose that we are to carry out but without being tied relationally to God and trusting HIM fully for his leading we will most likely miss our purpose. Yes, to us it may feel risky. Most likely that is because it may take us to a place of discomfort, an unknown area.

I, for one, dislike discomfort! There have been several times that I have clearly felt the calling of the Lord to move into an area of the unknown. One was very difficult, and I fought it for a while. What I see now is the actual fighting of that risk was the unpleasant part. Lisa Bevere says, “Risk is the antidote of anxiety.”. And she is right.

This risk He was asking me to do was very personal. It had possibilities of exploding and causing great discomfort but ultimately, I found that the discomfort of fighting and not moving was worse than moving where He was leading me. I won’t lie, it was painful and there was very personal loss associated with the risk of movement.

In the bible there are many examples of people taking great risks for the good and for God. Here are a few…..

• Rahab knew what was about to happen to her city, and she acknowledged God’s sovereignty. “…for the lord your God is God in heaven above and on the earth below,” (Joshua 2). Punishment for lying to the king would be severe, but this didn’t deter Rahab from her goal – ensuring the safety of her family.

• Abraham was tested by being told to take his son to the altar as a burnt sacrifice, in (Genesis 22). Ultimately Abraham did not have to sacrifice his son but he did show that he was willing to take a big risk of obedience for God.

• Mary took an ultimate risk. Having a child out of wedlock in biblical days would have caused all kinds of ridicule and shame. But Mary took on that risk as it says in (Luke 1) Mary said, “I am the servant of the Lord. Let this happen to me as you say!” Then the angel went away.

• And then there is Peter in (Matthew 14:22-34). Jesus was on the shore with many of his other followers when he instructed some of them to get into the boat and push off into the water. Jesus said, “Come.” So, Peter got out of the boat and walked on the water and came to Jesus. Can you imagine stepping out of a boat, into choppy water and walking? What courage that took, and how risky!

So, are you going to be a risk taker or a cautionary? What might He be asking you to do for your family, your community, your church and ultimately for Him? Will you choose the uncomfortable and unknown for Him?

Contact Faith Columnist Rhonda Gould at rhondagouldonline.com/contact-for-free-initial-session/ to explore more.
Gould is an ACC Certified life coach through the ICF. She specializes in helping others reveal patterns that are holding them back. You can learn more about Rhonda’s work at https://rhondagouldonline.com/.