In J.R.R. Tolkien’s book ‘The Hobbit,’ a comfortable, unambitious, set-in-his-ways, and a bit of a control-freak creature has his contentment disturbed as a great adventure is kindly forced upon him. Something inside Bilbo Baggins thrusts him into a daring adventure that forever changed his life. Accompanying a band of dwarves and the wizard Gandalf, this venture takes many turns with perils, laughter, life-threatening encounters, victories, character stretching experiences, miracles, and more. Bilbo Baggins is no longer the sedentary, I-have-to-be in-control, Hobbit of the Shire and he is changed, transformed for the better.
As Tolkien’s saga continues in the trilogy books “The Lord of Rings,” Bilbo’s nephew, Frodo Baggins, is about to take on an even greater adventure with both personal and world-altering consequences. Before Frodo knows of this mission, Bilbo expresses some challenging wisdom for his nephew …and us; “It’s a dangerous business, Frodo, going out your door. You step onto the road, and if you don’t keep your feet, there’s no knowing where you might be swept off to.”
It is a dangerous move to release control, to give up comfort, to put ourselves out there and take on a new adventure. Yet that is exactly the life God calls us to! A life fully devoted to following Jesus. The wise, most powerful, immensely rich King Solomon, after trying to live life to its fullest (and he tried everything!) said this about what our true quest in life should be…
Ecclesiastes 12:13 The end of the matter; all has been heard. Fear God and keep His commandments, for this is the whole duty of man
Jesus said it this way…
Matthew 22:37-39 37 And He (Jesus) said to him, “You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind. 38 This is the great and first commandment. 39 And a second is like it: You shall love your neighbor as yourself.
This is dangerous! It means taking ourselves out of the center of our life and seeking to love God more; Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. To grow in knowledge of who God is and trusting Him, stretching our faith to depend on Him more, even when He is silent or does not answer prayer as we hoped, or our life circumstances are difficult. That’s dangerous!
It’s a dangerous move to pray as Jesus instructs…
Matthew 6:9-10 9 Pray then like this: “Our Father in heaven, hallowed be Your name.1 10 Your kingdom come, Your will be done on earth as it is in heaven.
It’s a dangerous move to say to God “Your will be done…” for it thrusts us out our self-comfort, self-focus, unambitious, control-freak type of life and kindly sets us on a faith journey that we were designed for. Yes, there will be perils, but also victories, great character development, miracles, sure some difficult situations, yet faith-stretching trials, but with unrelenting love, grace, mercy and more. The question is will you make that dangerous move to surrender to the great adventure God has for you? Will you step out your door and on the road of following Jesus? Let’s do this together.
Seeking to make the dangerous move of following Jesus with you,
PS Over these next few weeks on both of our campuses we will be experiencing our Global Outreach Week. The theme of this week is “Hope-Full: Joining in to help feed a hope-hungry world” challenging us to be a part of the dangerous adventure of bringing the hope of Jesus to our world. Please see our website for more details www.cypresschurch.net