This is an adventure of epic proportions.
To say so is, of course, borrowed language from a friend in literature. To say so is also to say something true. You and I are living it right now – can you feel it, the adventure? The ebb, the flow, the pulsing, throbbing of your heart pressing – no, crashing – through moment unto moment? How else could our moments spent however quietly or busily feel so furious or so blind or so urgent?
The urgency of now is a sword-fight between courage and doubt. It is the stringing together of quiet skirmishes over who gets to decide your heart, what you will, and who you will become. Did you know that?
But hypothetically you say, “I am running a cash register for a living. What are you talking about?” as you clock out and commute home to find Netflix waiting. Can’t you see it though? The whole question is itself evidence of the answer. Why does running a cash register confront your sense of well-used time? Why do you leave it behind for the adventurous imagined stories of Netflix? Because you long for your life to be as adventurous as those adventures pre-imagined and pre-constructed for you on your screen.
At its bare bones, this whole sinking sense that cashiering is a waste of your life is evidence of one of those skirmishes between courage and doubt. The doubt says, “Your life is only worth as much as what you do for a living!” The courage raises its voice instead, “My life is worth so much that it spills over into everything I do and imbues it with purpose!”
I am writing, dear reader, from my own epic adventure. The face of it is actually pretty quiet. I am not like I used to be, although now I am more of who I really am than I ever knew before. I do not have a list of goals for my five-year life plan or a strategy for climbing the corporate ladder to my dream job. I do not have a rhythm of tracked life disciplines to propel my self-development. All of the charts and tables I knew so well in college have faded away like old leaves that decayed on a forest floor. What has sprung up instead is something so free, so organic that I cannot ever write a booklet on what you ought to do to reproduce it in your own life. I can only say that I get to walk hand in hand with my God and He is my Father. The natural vibrancy of this intimacy could not be replicated from one heart to another except in the way you bury a seed in the ground and let rain, sun, and earth tend to its growth.
Be free to believe. Things are far better than you think they are. Yes, pain and loss and suffering appear in our world, sometimes in proportions so great that doubt and fear try to wield them as instruments to make us lose our courage. But it is impossible for us to lose heart. Impossible, that is, as long as we refuse to mistrust our Father who sent His Son to obliterate the distance between our hearts and His own. I am seeing it like clearer and clearer daylight: we must believe the goodness of our God. It is imperative. Courage demands this confidence that He is good. How can we have courage without it? And doubt has only ever been our enemy when it comes to this. (Has doubt in His goodness ever produced life in you?)
This is an adventure of epic proportions. It is our privilege to believe that the God who wrought us in His image has already paid every ransom price, already pulled out all the stops, to restore us to the image He made us in. Or did you think that Jesus alone can shine and you’re just here to feel bad about your past sin to show your forever penitence? No, silly! You’re an adventurer and you’ve hooked your wagon to His. You’ve covenanted to this wild Groom who’s changed your name and now He wants to take you on the grandest adventure.
There will be fights against evil, there will be perils, but love is always worth fighting for; and when we believe He is good, we love Him. When we believe He’s made us free, we love Him. When we believe we can see sons and daughters in all the tired, war-worn faces around us (even the ones that snap at us), we love Him and them. Will you reach out your hand now so He can take you with Him wherever His love wants to go?
So hear this please
And watch as your heart speeds up endlessly
And look for the stars as the sun goes down
Each breath that you take has a thunderous sound
Everything, everything’s magic
Just sit back and hold on, but hold on tight
Prepare for the best and the fastest ride
And reach out your hand, and I’ll make you mine!
– Everything’s Magic, Angels and Airwaves
Fellow Epic Adventurer