Phil Us Up!
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July 7, 2016, 9:25 AM

Running or Walking?


     If you are going to be successful at anything, we all know there is going to be some risk. That's why those of us who need to lose weight are told, “Consult a physician before starting an exercise program”.  That’s why most of us encourage our children or friends to seek some counseling before making a life changing decision such as a commitment to marry. It doesn’t matter what it is, investing in the stock market, starting a business, leaving one job for another one – everything we do has some element of risk! I knowI don’t want to live in a world where everyday outcomes were guaranteed. We have to understand the concept of risk and reward…..but, some people confuse a simple, healthy sense of challenge with the foolish tendency to tempt fate, I mean I don’t need to just do things to see what happens!

     In the next couple of weeks you will hear or see a good example of some folks that I think get those two things mixed up. The running of the bulls in Pamplona, Spain will take place over the next few days. It is run daily at 8 am from July 7th through the 14th.  This spectacle has been held for hundreds of years and is broadcast on live TV in Spain. People from all over the world will “run with the bulls”.

     In one person's opinion, running through narrow streets to escape the charge of a half-dozen remarkably powerful and extremely unhappy bulls crosses the line of taking risks or seeking adventure. It's something very different from courage or bravery. I think it’s better called, flirting with disaster.

     If there is risk in exercising to lose weight to improve cardiac function, then smoking, overeating or drinking to excess is flirting with disaster. If danger lurks in the uncertain twists and turns of life in so many things we often try to mitigate the risk, to do things like this, I believe is to invite heartache. If sacrifice or even persecution is involved in the life-pilgrimage that is faith, as is promised by Jesus, you can imagine the risk for those who navigate this life without Him.

     So here is some advice I need. Don't live to your fears. Yes, there is always the possibility things won't work out. There are dangers ranging from potholes, (especially in Haskell) to cliffs on every highway of life. But the alternative to fear is not false courage at the bottom of a bottle or arrogance in making decisions. It is bold resolve rooted in humble faith.

     In your own life calculations, it might help to ask if the option you see is taking a risk or flirting with disaster, walking by faith or running with bulls. One is legitimate and holy; the other stands to leave you gored and bleeding.

 


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