I love the insightful stories of The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings by J. R. R. Tolkein. These are wonderful books, now made into movies. They highlight characters that are all too often like us humans. One such character is Bilbo Baggins, a pleasant Hobbit settled into his nice little Hobbit hole of a home in the peaceful, serene land of the Shire. His life was planned, organized, and this included plenty of time for occasional interactions with others, with much time ordering life and home, being busy about protecting his sedentary existence. When approached by the wizard Gandalf about heading out on an adventure Bilbo replied, “Sorry I don’t want any adventures, thank you. Not Today. Good morning! But please come to tea – any time you like! Why not tomorrow? Good bye!” Bilbo, like many of us, was reluctant to the disruption of adventure.
Gandalf persisted, yet Bilbo retorted that he could read about all kinds of adventures and view maps of excited places. Gandalf countered, “The world is not in your books and maps. Its out there…you’ll have a tale or two to tell of your own when you come back.” Bilbo seeming a bit interested, yet fighting the fear said, “Can you promise that I will come back?” Gandalf honestly answered, “No. And if you do…you will not be the same.” At that you would think the story would have ended and Gandalf would have chosen another. However, something stirred in Bilbo that moved him to step out into a great adventure.
The Bible challenges us to be people willing to step out and do the hard work of taking the initiative.
Proverbs 14:23 In all toil there is profit, but mere talk tends only to poverty.
Proverbs 10:4 A slack hand causes poverty, but the hand of the diligent makes rich.
A diligent hand is one that takes the initiative to step out into the great risky adventures of life. There is a richness beyond the monetary for those who step out their front door and walk into the adventures of life; meeting new people, trying new restaurants, using your skills and time volunteering at school, church, in your city, at a nonprofit organization, helping your neighbor, being kind to someone in need, taking a fun trip, starting a new hobby, and getting to know God better. These adventures all take efforts, but it is well worth it!
Proverbs 12:11 Whoever works his land will have plenty of bread, but he who follows worthless pursuits lacks sense.
Proverbs 13:4 The soul of the sluggard craves and gets nothing, while the soul of the diligent is richly supplied.
Proverbs 22:29 Do you see a man skillful in his work? He will stand before kings; he will not stand before obscure men.
It is a great temptation to spend much of our time and energies in a survival mode thinking we have no time for adventures, yet that may be just what our lives need. We need the change that comes as we stretch ourselves to venture out and make new friends, take that dream trip, go on a short term missions project, learn that new skill or craft, and get out of our comfort zone. We will be different, changed and no longer suffering the plight of a sedentary existence.
Though there are many examples of adventurous people in the Bible, one I like ”The Proverbs 31 Woman.” She is amazing. She has a great relationship with her husband, she has learned and works her talents and skills, she is involved in all kinds of business ventures, she helps the needy, and she cares for her kids and herself.
Proverbs 31:27 She looks well to the ways of her household and does not eat the bread of idleness.
She is a woman who takes the initiative and is willing to step out into the many adventures of life. Will you? What adventures are waiting for you?
Maybe it’s time to make time and take time to head out on a new adventure. Every adventure starts with a first step, what will yours be?
Maybe one of your next adventures is to attend church. Church is a great place to be encouraged towards the adventure of knowing God. If you don’t already have a church you attend regularly, we would like to invite you to Cypress Church or any of our branch churches. Our website has all the information you would need www.cypresschurch.net. We would love the adventure of connecting with you.
Stepping out on some new adventures along with you,