December 12, 2017

Becoming A Dangerous Christian

Editor’s note: Lisa Dye is a regular contributor to the Internet Monk community. We recently ran another post about the Dangerous God you might want to read in conjunction with this word from Lisa.

Recently, two close friends and I hired a life coach to join us at a lake cabin for a weekend retreat. We’d planned the event for weeks and were prepared with everything we could think of, including plenty of food, tunes and our most comfortable cabin attire. What we were unprepared for was hearing that we were dangerous women becoming more dangerous – in our thinking and our future plans.

Maybe it was just that I was unprepared to hear it. One of my friends, a lawyer many characterize as a pit bull, seems unafraid of danger. Life has thrown her a lot and she’s a woman who leaps high in the air, eyes wide open and catches fearlessly. My other friend, a professor of marketing, speaks truth with such boldness and extracts truth with such surgical precision that her subjects hardly feel the pain. I, on the other hand, am not sure why I’m allowed to breathe the same air.

Dangerous woman? Ha! Dangerous Christian? No way. I am the one who, in response to the chronic trepidation instilled from being raised in an alcoholic home, spent my adult years seeking safety with a vengeance. That is, until three years ago when I’d had quite enough of my compulsively careful existence. I realized that God, no doubt, was bored with me as well. If He was indwelling me and I was forever cocooning myself, then we were stuck at home together, never to go on adventures.

A passage of Scripture I had memorized and meditated upon was suddenly calling out to me. “However, as it is written: ‘No eye has seen, no ear has heard, no mind has conceived what God has prepared for those who love him’ – but God has revealed it to us by his Spirit. The Spirit searches all things, even the deep things of God” (I Corinthians 2: 9, 10 NIV). When I realized something beyond what I’d ever imagined was prepared for me, I wanted it more than I wanted to stay safe.

That was a turning point in my life that brought forth a love of writing I’d let simmer on a back burner for much too long. Within months, I was on a plane far above Wyoming’s wilderness experiencing my first adventure. Below, snow-capped Teton Mountains reached toward me. Afraid of flying, failure and facing strangers, I hurtled through the atmosphere at 35,000 feet on my way to interview an award-winning artist whose career achievements eclipsed mine as a newly-minted writer. Absurd.

Out on that first limb, I sensed God’s pleasure in my consenting to join Him there. Although the whole experience felt decidedly unsafe, it was a moment of sweet communion. Saying ‘yes’ to Him unleashed a chain of events, both exciting and scary. I knew I was seeing a bit of the future He was giving me. My thoughts flew to Aslan, C.S. Lewis’ Christ figure in The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe. Of him, Mr. Beaver said, “’Course he isn’t safe. But he’s good.” I had always known Him to be good. Why, oh why, did it take me so long to realize the part about not being safe?

Fast forwarding to the retreat weekend, I felt stunned to hear myself referred to as ‘dangerous.’ I’ve been pondering the whole idea since then and had a small flash of revelation as I drove to work one day. If we spend very much time with an unsafe God, we may well become a little unsafe ourselves. Is that a good thing?

Our life coach tasked us with writing an epitaph. I wrote, “Lisa went on adventures with God and loved Him with a furious passion.” That’s a far cry from the epitaph I was writing in earlier years. “Lisa lived a safe and orderly life. She went to church every Sunday, kept a tidy house, raised well-behaved children and was a meticulous keeper of books and papers at the office.” Not a thing was wrong with any of this, but it didn’t make me a very interesting lover for God. Neither did it woo anyone else into a love affair with Him. That’s when I realized that always living a safe life may be superficially pleasant to observers, superficially pleasant to the one living it, but downright annoying to the One who created us as His fellow travelers.

Don’t get me wrong. I’m not advocating taking on a death wish, creating firestorms of controversy on purpose or ruffling the feathers of fellow believers just to see them get ruffled. Nevertheless, there is a principle involved in following hard on God’s heels that Oswald Chambers points out … “obedience to God is going to cost other people more than we thought.” Truly, it costs the one obeying. Added discomfort and danger comes when it costs others who didn’t hear the call, but find themselves required to pay a price.

Consider the apostles and what their obedience meant for their families – the pain of watching their loved one persecuted or exiled or martyred. Missionaries ministering in danger zones subject those close to them to similar sufferings. Modern day tellers of truth get grenades launched at them in the media just as prophets of old were sent scurrying for their lives into the desert.

What if those obedient ones had said, “No, God, I’m not going on that journey with you. Don’t expect me to climb out on that limb.”  What happens if we say No? Perhaps our families would be more peaceful, our pockets more prosperous and our reputations more secure, but does anything of true importance get changed or impacted?

Watchman Nee wrote and demonstrated with his own life another principle of becoming dangerous. To a point, Christians can reasonably expect a certain amount of goodness as a natural consequence of a well-lived life. There is, however, line of danger we will come to eventually if we keep saying ‘yes’ to God. There is a cup that will be presented and we can choose to drink from it or not. It is death. Jesus drank from it first and experienced a literal death. He asked His disciples if they were able to drink from it. He prophesied that they would (See Acts 10:38, 39) and they did. Drinking the cup could mean the death of reputation, personal ambition, an important relationship or physical death. What He asks of me will likely be different than what He asks of you.

The writer of Hebrews seems to indicate that for those who agree to walk in their dangerous destinies, a choice may be given to either receive the full measure of danger or turn back from it. “Women received their dead to life again; and others were tortured, not accepting deliverance; that they might obtain a better resurrection …” (Hebrews 11:35 KJV). It’s a reasonable conclusion to draw, then, that foregoing deliverance and walking into danger in answer to God’s call is good, even if it creates firestorms – even if it makes us unpopular, persecuted, tortured, or dead.

I wish I could tell you I never looked back, but old habits die hard. Writing this post makes me feel like a hypocrite. The road to becoming less safe and more dangerous has been one of fits and starts – a step of faith here, retreat into fear and panic there. My call hasn’t threatened me physically to this point as it has for some of God’s more brave and dangerous ones. Rather, a second calling after childrearing and running a business has meant hours a day writing (mostly uncompensated), venturing into unfamiliar territory and a certain unavailability that is costing my family the comfort of my presence and lack of focus on them. It pains me to be in the position of making them pay when God has whispered, “Lisa, come join me in this.”

Recently, I finished reading The Voyage of the Dawn Treader by C.S. Lewis and discovered in it a perfect metaphor for this topic of danger. A ship loaded with fellow travelers is on an adventure to the end of the world searching for seven missing Narnian lords when it approaches a deep darkness; the crew ponders whether or not to sail into it. The decision is left to Lucy, whose character I most long to demonstrate in my own life. “Lucy felt that she would very much rather not, but what she said out loud was, ‘I’m game.’”

Sailing into thick blackness, the crew manages to rescue long-missing Lord Rhoop, but their attempt to find a way out has them rowing in circles. Lucy, the one who always manages to see Aslan when others cannot and talk to him while others are formulating their own plans, calls on him for help. This time the lion takes the form of an albatross and leads the ship out of darkness crying, “Courage, dear heart,” as he circles overhead.

To all appearances, Lucy would not seem dangerous, but over and over in her adventures she chooses the more frightening path and for it she gets the privilege of riding on the Lion’s back, running her fingers through His mane and feeling His breath upon her face. It’s her proximity to the dangerous One that makes her dangerous as well. She leaves in her wake change – rescues, healings and Aslan’s touch.

My sense is that this is only the beginning. Even in the few short years since I became a willing travel companion, God has raised the bar. He requires increasingly scary ventures then whispers at just the right time, “Courage, dear heart.” I usually panic at first, but ultimately I am hard pressed to turn down his invitation. Like Lucy, I want the Lion’s breath on my face.

Comments

  1. Debbie says:

    I think most of us refuse to drink the cup. Good article.

  2. I often wonder about obedience and the path it would lead me on. A friend of mine has said that the default setting for the Christian should be persecution. That the way we live our lives should be so at odd with the world that we stand out to the discomfort and chagrin of the world. This is not to say that we seek out unnecessary confrontation but rather that obedience to God doesn’t always lead to what we think it should.

    Related somewhat is the concept of success. We’re not responsible for success. We’re responsible for faithfulness to what God has called us to do.

    Good post

  3. Sorry, you lost me at “hired a life coach”.

    I am to believe that there are not just one but multiple people who list “life coach” as their occupation on paperwork and for whose services actual, denominated money changes hands?

    Pathetic.

    • Oh and “marketing professor”? Really? That is a ‘professed’ body of knowledge? What does she teach on day TWO of the class after she’s finished with padding out, “Sell stuff more expensively than you bought it for” for an hour or so the first day?

      • Having a bad day are we, J? Let’s try adopting a more positive outlook in our comments before I have to begin moderation…

      • Your first troll showed promise but the second was laughable.

        On a 10 point scale, I’m giving you a 4. You need to step it up if you’re going to successfully troll.

        • Really? I liked Troll 2 better than Troll 1, personally. I find J’s riposte a comic marriage of ludicrousness of snobbery that cries out to be snorted at.

          MARKETING. Pfah.

    • Actually, I have to agree with J here. If THIS lifetstyle:

      Recently, two close friends and I hired a life coach to join us at a lake cabin for a weekend retreat. We’d planned the event for weeks and were prepared with everything we could think of, including plenty of food, tunes and our most comfortable cabin attire.

      is “dangerous,” well then, may we all live dangerously! Honestly, does this person even know there’s a recession going on???

      • What does the recession have to do with taking a weekend retreat with friends? This was not a spa getaway. It was a time of intense searching of the Spirit for direction in life. The dangerous part comes now that the retreat is done and it is time to live out what was heard from the Spirit in each of these women’s spirits. Not everyone is going to be able to embrace the dangerous God. Not everyone wants to meet Him as the All Consuming Fire.

        • All I got from this article was that the author switched from one comfortable white-collar job to another comfortable white collar job, and we’re supposed to applaud her as brave and “dangerous.” (That homeless fellow in the banner image is starting to look real ironic, right about now.)

          I don’t see what that has to do with God as “All Consuming Fire.” I don’t even see what it has to do with Spirit. I think she just felt like changing jobs, and had the money to take a chance on something more “arty.” This really isn’t relevant to people who are trying not to lose faith and hope while they’re struggling just to pay the rent.

          • Jeff Dunn says:

            She never switched jobs. She is in the same job she has been for years. She is talking about switching her heart from “safe God” to “dangerous God.” Not everyone can accept this or understand this. Let’s pray for Lisa as she continues her journey of faith with a God who is not a tame lion…

          • Lisa Dye says:

            I’m still working the old job and added the new one. Being arty wasn’t my motivation at all. It’s what I believe God was leading me to do. Admittedly, I am just beginning, but I want finish whatever journey God has for me. I’m praying to that end. I especially don’t want what I write or how I live my life to hurt anyone who’s trying not to lose faith and hope. Indeed, I long to be an encouragement.

            Thanks for reading Brenda — and for taking time to comment.

          • “s “dangerous,” well then, may we all live dangerously! Honestly, does this person even know there’s a recession going on???”

            And Judas said, “Could not this retreat been sold for 30 pieces of silver and the money given to the poor?”

      • Lisa Dye says:

        I’m well aware a recession is going on since I’m still running a business (30+ years) and go through struggles like many others to faithfully meet our payroll and pay our bills in an increasingly difficult economy.

        Maybe the two-day retreat with close friends seems self-indulgent to some people, but the three of us felt ourselves at a crossroads and wanted to help each other find the right path.

        Thanks for your comments. They are good food for thought.

        • Hi Lisa,

          I appreciated the article. I too have thought about what might be written for my epitaph, and how that might inform what I do over the next 30 years.

          Coincidentally, last night I read the story of the Rich Young Ruler with my kids. Part of what we talked about was how wealth can blind us to the will of God. So it is hard for some to imagine how seeking God’s will can begin with Plane ride/Life Coach/Mountains/Cabin by the Lake/Food & Tunes. Seeking God seems like it should be a little more of an ascetic pursuit. Having said that, some of my own best times of refocus have come at isolated retreats in the mountains or wilderness.

          By the way, as an aside, my brother has his MBA in marketing, and has a life coach too! In some denominations up in Canada here they call them “spiritual advisers.”

        • Isaac Rehberg (the poster formerly known as Obed) says:

          “Courage, dear heart.”

        • Brenda says:

          I’m sorry if I came across as harsh this morning, but this is (obviously) a sensitive subject for me, as I have spent the past several years struggling financially while having family and friends criticise me for ‘not having a “proper” job. Any time someone suggests that work out to be spiritually meaningful as well… well, that’s just one more thing to add to my worry list, and so I snarl. Thank you, Lisa, for your kind response to my snarling. Maybe someday I’ll be able understand your article better.

          Also, to the person who compared me to Judas… that’s not quite what I meant… 😉

    • SearchingAnglican says:

      Ummm…wow.

      So, J, you may not be fond of life coaches, CS Lewis or marketing professors, but what do you think about her premise about the cost of “dangerous” obedience in the life of a Christian?

      • Donalbain says:

        Well, what EXACTLY is the danger that she faces? I didnt see anything. She went on a plane. Is that it?

    • J here raises a real issue. What exactly is the function of a “life coach”? Is not Jesus supposed to be our life coach? The retreat idea can be invigorating, but why not just the 3 of them with reading materials (Bible, Christian stuff)? I would argue that there is precisely less “dangerousness” in hiring a life coach to do this, rather than simply setting out on one’s own.
      I definitely hear the “Danger” message, and my life is certainly not full of a dangerous God. Indeed, I sometimes wonder how I’d do if really put to the test.

      • Melissa says:

        Yes, Jesus is supposed to be our “life coach.” However, he has this annoying habit of using people (often his church) to be his hands and feet. He’s also our doctor, psychologist, father, financial adviser, teacher… are you suggesting that we not ever ask other people to help us along in our journey?

        Last time I checked, God created us to be in community…

  4. Want to live dangerously, Christians? Here’s an idea: Read a book by an author OTHER than C.S. Lewis.

    • Or, if that’s too scary for you, how about living a day the way C.S. Lewis did: Read some poems of Ovid (the ones about “there is no death/only change of innovation”) and have lots of drinks. Then go teach at a secular college and in the afternoon marry an atheist, ex-communist, Jewish divorcee/single mother.

      • Isaac Rehberg (the poster formerly known as Obed) says:

        Sounds like a plan. Grace in action, pal, grace in action.

      • Christopher Lake says:

        J, well before Lewis married Joy, she had become a committed Christian. For a Christian to knowingly, deliberately marry an atheist would not exactly be an exercise in Biblical wisdom. Not “dangerous,” at least not in a good way– just foolish.

    • Any suggestions? I’ve already read read everything Christopher Hitchens has ever written (I adore him, curmudgeon that he is); almost everything Richard Dawkins has written; William Lobdell; Dan Barker; Nietsche; and of course, the late, great Douglas Adams. Now I’m exploring Philip Yancey, Martin Luther, and Charles Spurgeon. All of those are pretty dangerous, for a cradle Catholic. 😉

      • and I *meant* to write “read read” that way. Because I read every good book twice. So there. 😉

      • Just curious. Are you reading Yancey, Luther, and Spurgeon as counter-points to Hitchens, Dawkins, and other atheists, or are you reading to better understand theological matters from a biblical point of view?

        No offense intended. Just curious.

      • Isaac Rehberg (the poster formerly known as Obed) says:

        I should be done with my Master’s at the end of the year… after that I intend on trying to tackle many of the classics in the “Great Western Canon.” Probably starting with some ancient Greek stuff. I’m told that Catholic seminaries train the would-be priests in philosophy before they take a single course in theology. I’ve got a lot of theology under my belt, but not so much philosophy. Plato, here I come!

      • Luther is dangerous, for a cradle Lutheran 😉

        And no, that is not a joke. It is completely serious.

        In any case, glad you’ve found these writers. Coincidentally, I am discovering the Church Fathers. So, I suppose we’re making a good trade here, Christine 😀

  5. Joy Gresham had converted to Christianity, largely through Lewis’s writings, by the time she married Jack Lewis. Yes, it created turmoil among his friends, some of whom did not accept his marriage to her and stopped coming around to see them. But Lewis truly loved his wife whom he had for too short a time before she succumbed to cancer. I would have to say marrying Joy Gresham may have been the most dangerous thing Lewis did in his journey of faith.

    As far as reading something other than C.S. Lewis, if you read the various posts and their comments for long on this site, you will soon realize that the IM community is extremely well-read. But you will also quickly learn that you don’t mess with our St. (C.S.) Lewis…

  6. Challenging article. (Oh, and I love C. S. Lewis too, especially Narnia).

  7. Jo Ann Peterson says:

    Love it…Thanks Jeff. You made me giggle on a rather difficult morning.

  8. Jo Ann Peterson says:

    I can actually relate to both J and Lisa…I love writing and the feeling of inspiration which seems to come from God at times and I certainly LOVE the idea of getting away for a weekend at a cabin in the woods. (And if someone can afford to “hire” a “life coach” that is totally their business.) On the other hand, I can relate to the “wishy-washiness” that J seems to be detecting from the article. The silliness that seems to present itself in an article about “a dangerous God” and meeting this “dangerous God” at a cabin in the woods (with the talented friends and life coach) and all that the retreat-type weekend implies. Done the reteat thing and also have been to Myanmar on a mission trip… Like I said, I can relate to both and I can love ya both in Christ.

  9. I think that Lisa’s point may be that one meets this dangerous God in different ways. I suspect that my current life is a lot like she described “Lisa lived a safe and orderly life. She went to church every Sunday, kept a tidy house, raised well-behaved children and was a meticulous keeper of books and papers at the office.” Just sub in my name, and a few more activities and you’ve got me in a nutshell. The idea that maybe, just maybe God finds that a bit boring is shaking my nice, steady little foundations. And I GET the fear of stepping out and being passionate for God, allowing Him to move me wherever he wills, even if for other people it looks like I’m just taking a walk in the park. I choke at talking to strangers, I second guess myself every time I sit down to write. Living with a dangerous God means going with him THROUGH that fear.

    I doubt that many people would say it was very dangerous of me to quit my job to be an at-home mom. No doubt I’d get comments about privilege and middle-class. And you’d be utterly, absolutely wrong. So nix the judging and get the point of the article. I did.

  10. I just read the comments above… I think the Lion is annoyed at people nitpicking instead of learning the lesson of the article – draw near, listen closely, live intentionally.

  11. 1 Thessalonians 4:11

    11and to aspire to live quietly, and to mind your own affairs, and to work with your hands, as we instructed you,

  12. Jeff Dunn says:

    Before you comment, go back to the beginning of this post. Click on the highlighted words “Dangerous God” in my editor’s note. Read that post. Read it again. Then you will be better prepared to 1) understand Lisa’s excellent article here, and 2) comment on it.

  13. Lisa,
    Got your point. Keep seeking with an open heart. I applaud you for desiring to move into a deeper understanding of God and getting outside your comfort zone. Pay no attention to critics who seem to think that only their definition of “dangerous” is acceptable.
    Over the years, I’ve mused at the “deeper life authority” of folks (often fresh out of High School or College) who suddenly have the wisdom and insight to evaluate other believers’ spiritual authenticity.

  14. Donald Todd says:

    The old Chinese adage says that a journey of a thousand miles begins with the first step. Anyone who steps out of their comfort zone is open to a new journey. This lady should be applauded for having the courage to risk change. I don’t know where it will lead but good for her. Hopefully she will see people and things through Jesus’ eyes as He leads her on this adventure, and there is no telling where she’ll end up.

  15. I don’t usually comment, but the vitriol compelled me. I am a permanently, progressively disabled person in my entire body. I sit in a power wheelchair, struggle to eat, fight to breathe. That life situation could cause me to sneer at many of my contemporary’s hardships, especially the physical variety. In truth, I used to. Jesus, however, has beat on that part of my heart since. I don’t get to judge how hard things are for someone else, their master does. God in his grace starts our dangerous journeys with us where we are, whether that is in an upper class mansion or a third world hovel. He also has different purposes for us, and each of our trips are individual. It is our christian duty to help and encourage each other along the way, not to declare what sanctification another is experiencing as insufficient. As Aslan said in The Last Battle, “Further up and further in!”

    Thank you very much for your words, Lisa, keep trusting the Holy Spirit and you never know what could happen.

    • Thanks,Tokah, we need to hear your voice.

    • JoanieD says:

      Excellent comments, Tokah.

      And Lisa, I wish you “Courage, dear heart.”

      • Isaac Rehberg (the poster formerly known as Obed) says:

        Lol, you beat me to it, but since I responded WAY up there, it looks like I’M the one being imitated! Boo-yeah!

    • Lisa Dye says:

      Words of Plato come to mind: “Be kind, for everyone you meet is fighting a hard battle.” Your own battle has taught you amazing kindness! Tokah, you have inspired me. Thank you.

  16. Carol from SoCal says:

    Lisa, I know what you mean and appreciate the post. I wonder – no offense intended – if men can appreciate the patchwork quilt of living that makes up a woman’s life? We have so many phases…and now – in my mid-40’s with one child left at home out of six – I feel so “on the brink.” God has been pulling me, too, to embrace Him in a new way. The “study to lead a quiet life” part has been done. The “go out…” part seems to be near.

    • This reminds me of a sermon I listened to not long ago – the minister says Jesus first calls us to come and taste and then He says go and die. Love from a mid-forties mum who has been contemplating drinking the cup.

  17. Lisa,
    I like what you wrote. Clearly, your writing is a little dangerous, judging by axes some commentators are grinding…. Geeez.

    As one who has sought my share of adventures and has settled with the years, i was inspired by your article. Keep it up. And I will start letting go again.

    • Michelle says:

      “Clearly, your writing is a little dangerous, judging by axes some commentators are grinding…. Geeez.”

      Good point, joe m.

  18. What I got from the article was this. Of course I am an Imonk fan and see his thinking in a lot of the writing. Follow where God leads, let him take you anywhere he wants. Go with faith, without a safety net, and you won’t regret it. Life is to be fully savored. God gave us life for more than just trudging through. Let him give us a full life.

  19. I forgot to add. A full life with Him. It’s more than we could think or imagine.

  20. Anita Brickman says:

    Lisa —thank you, thank you, for this excellent topic!
    As a person transformed by God’s gentle grace and leading thru such “silly” things as retreats, sacred sisters, journaling and such—–
    I am with you girl—–
    I have found that those who scoff and reject such things, are often, in truth, just not ready yet or afraid to delve.
    Blessings to you on your dangerous journey—-

  21. Loved this. Reminds me of a quote N.T. Wright says he received from his Bishop:

    “Everywhere Paul went, a riot resulted. Everywhere I go, I get invited to tea…”

  22. I’m surprised nobody has yet responded in these comments to your “epitaph” challenge.

    Yesterday we held the bruial+memorial service for my mother. Years ago, she asked for her epitaph to read, “well done, good and faithful servant”. She had hoped that she could discover some big-picture adventure with God that would fulfill this wish. In the end, her dangerous journey was simply to bear witness to the sufferings of Alzheimer’s for 10+ years with dignity and grace and even a live-in-the-moment cheerfulness.

    Lisa, your version of dangerous might look like the “widow’s mite” to some other hard-core readers here, but (like Carol from SoCal said above) you may be starting from a different place in life than them. It’s your own journey, and God will honor the desire of your heart, even if the outcome does not look as dramatic to other people.

    • Amen. And I am sorry for the loss of your mother. Thanks for the reminder that dangerous doesn’t always mean dramatic, sometimes it just means faithful.

  23. I am the lifecoach this writer hired. Actually I gave up a very lucrative position to live dangerously and follow my heart to become a Christian lifecoach. Since I am more concerned with using this very God-ordained material to help people who are seeking clarity, purpose and direction in their life, my nominal charges may never cover the cost of my training. Thanks to the blogger who reminded others that sometimes the Lord does use others to come alongside people to be His hands and feet. The world needs more people like Lisa who are willing to do whatever it takes to follow the Lord (including hiring a lifecoach) and less people who would degrade the intensity of her dangerous living. The Lord uses us in all walks of life, and what is dangerous to one may not be to another. The biggest test is whether whatever we contribute is dangerous to the enemy, at any level. Personally I find no greater joy than being able to be a part of people’s lives who are seeking the Lord’s will. I can’t help but believe that the Lord is as pleased with Lisa’s dangerous living as He was in the widow’s mite. Before bashing whether God may use lifecoaching as part of His plan and whether Lisa’s heartfelt contribution is dangerous enough for you, you might want to check out a coach near you at http://www.lifepurposecoachingcenters.com. It’s a program supported by The Purpose Driven Life’s Rick Warren.

    • Thanks, Sherrill. Thanks for your good comments, and thanks for your willingness to pour into others’ lives to help free them from the idol of safety. We need your words in our lives. We need to be set free to be dangerous to our neighborhoods, our families, our own lives in Christ. Thanks for the effect you obviously have had in Lisa’s life. From your words came her words, and her words are very challenging to me.

    • Hear that J…..Rick Warren is all for it….feel better already ???? maybe not….

      Sounds like you have an awesome job, Sherrill: I’d trade in my fork-lift and flat bed carts for it any day…..

      Greg R

      • Michelle says:

        Would that trade be too dangerous for you, greg?

        • I don’t know about dangerous or not dangerous, I’m not sure I have the skills or wisdom to pull it off, but it sounds a lot more meaningful to people’s soul life than what I’m doing currently; I’m feeling a little “stuck” in what I do, but I don’t think it’s because other options scare me.

    • Karen Clark says:

      This life coach is a long time (over 40 years) friend of mine. She is a sincere and dedicated Christian who has given unbelievable amounts of time volunteering for her church, community, and just about everything else you could think of. She paid for her own training and certification and I had to talk her into charging for her services, not only because of the tremendous value, but just to recover some of the expenses.

      She has been through a lot of personal challenges in her life and has always looked to God to help her through. She has been the most inspiring person in my life and I know that many others can say the same thing.

    • The Gospel Driven Life was a better read.

  24. I loved this post too. After several very difficult years, I recently moved to rural Oregon from Chicago (where I have lived all my life). I’m self-employed, and living in the woods. I am also loving every minute of it. Was moving here frightening? Certainly, but trying to be “safe” for many years put me into a fair amount of danger anyway.

    One thing that I have come to realize living out here is that it is easy to fall into a delusion of safety. We don’t have a police department out here, and there are bears and mountain lions that occasionally show up on the property. I have to think differently and make different decisions than I did in the big city. I also have to accept that danger is a part of life and that there won’t always be a system that can rescue me.

    Again, thanks for writing this, Lisa.

  25. Christopher Lake says:

    I’m a former committed Reformed Baptist who, as a result of much study, is considering a “reversion” to the Catholic Church. If I go in that direction, I may well lose most of my Christian friends. I will definitely have to leave behind a promising career direction, at a time in my life, and at an age, when I really should not be leaving such opportunities behind– but you know what? Nothing matters more than Truth. If I find that the Catholic Church contains the fullness of of the Truth, then I must return– losses be what they will. If that is “dangerous,” then I’m staring danger in the face. It feels freeing.

    (I’m also not afraid that I will be “losing the Gospel.” I have realized that the “Catholicism” I rejected and left, in embracing Protestantism, was a gross caricature of the real thing.)

    • Blessings on your journey. I am thinking a lot like you.

    • If you believe in the Catholic gospel of salvation partially by our works then you will lose more than just your Christian friends. Just a friendly reminder that if you turn away from the true gospel you put your soul in jeopardy Christopher.

      • We are not going to turn this into a Catholic vs. Protestant debate. That has been done for more than 500 years now. We are taking a pass on it. This is a post on walking with our dangerous God. He is dangerous to Catholics, to Methodists, to Lutherans, to Baptists. He is dangerous to Charismatics and to the Orthodox. He is dangerous to those who never darken the doors of a church. Let’s hold hands with any brother or sister nearby–the storm is raging and we need each other.

        • Let’s hold hands with any brother or sister nearby–the storm is raging and we need each other.

          Boy , is it ever…..thanks , Chap Mike; the storms of discouragement are knockin trees over and tipping over dump trucks, thanks for this reminder. Energy spent fighting this denominational war is energy wasted. let’s focus on something Kingdom centered.

          Greg R

  26. We can all agree that a weekend retreat with two friends and a hired motivator isn’t the epitome of “dangerous.” But Lisa is not saying the weekend was an accomplishment in itself. She is saying it was a beginning to her and her friends. I don’t begrudge her the time or the money spent on that motivational session.

    There will be a time (perhaps many) when there’s no coach, no friends and no rented cottage — nothing at all between Lisa (or one of her friends) and a needful task. If she answers the call on that day of testing, then the session that convinced her she’s capable of “dangerous” action will have been worth it.

  27. dumb ox says:

    “Courage is resistance to fear, mastery of fear–not absence of fear. Except a creature be part coward, it is not a compliment to say he is brave; it is merely a loose misapplication of the word.” – Mark Twain

  28. Thank you for the challenge to live dangerously, Lisa. God IS a dangerous God, he’s a WildMan. This is easy to understand, but it is very hard to remember and keep remembering. Thank you for the reminder!

  29. No such thing as a “safe Christian” (notice I didn’t say “saved”). Those who bend the knee to Christ in true and repentant faith will have to live dangerously for the Lord. I don’t mean in a violent way, but in a way that will get you in trouble by the secular people in your lives. You may not get your head beheaded or be thrown into the lion’s pit but persecution and difficulties will come in varying degrees. One test whether you truly belong to the Lord you can make for yourself is by asking this: is the Christian life you’re living too comfortable for you on a consistent basis? If you answer in the affirmative it is more likely that you’re on your way to the Lake of Fire than the Heavenly Gates.

  30. I so needed to read this today. Life has been really hard the last two years for me. The loss of two children one my own another who was our fioster son who was a child of my heart. The easiest thing for me to do is not to foster again to protect my heart but I dont think this is what God wants me to do. He has given me and and my family a heart that is full of love for children especilally those with special needs a gift not all have. I am reminded today that he wants me to use my gifts. Thank you for allowing me to find courage in your words.

    • Lisa Dye says:

      Sara,

      I’ll pray God heals your broken heart as you continue to do what He has equipped you to do so well. What courage you have!

  31. Lisa….your husband was just in and led me to your website…your article gave me food for thought!
    Thanks

  32. Thanks for this post. Someone I know who regularly risks his life witnessing in Islamic countries said that although he knew he could lose his life at any point on his journeys the safest place to be was in the hands of God. The most dangerous place to be was on your own. Nothing would happen to him unless God allowed it and because he knows God is faithful and loving, he can trust Him. This has really helped me to let go of my need of an obvious ‘safety net’. I don’t do anything so obviously dangerous but my life can feel very precarious at times but I would rather live as I do because I know that now I am living in the safest place in the universe – the hands of God – although it often doesn’t feel like it! Dangerous living requires me to learn to trust God instead of my feelings.