How often have you taken the “safe” way during your life? Yes, it’s easy to do. We don’t take the job we’d really love because we are afraid we might fail. We don’t pursue the ONE we really love because we are afraid we will be spurned and hurt. We keep quiet and don’t offer our opinions because we are afraid we will be criticized or ridiculed. You know, the SAFE way! But, is that living?

When God gave us the gift of life, He attended for us to take that gift and run with it. In other words, we are expected to LIVE life. The idea of Paradise at the end of our life is a comforting one, but we are NOT intended to prop up our feet and wait for it.

One of my final years coaching basketball, I had a very weak team ability-wise. They would play hard at the beginning, but as they inevitably began to fall behind, they tended to surrender. I challenged them. I told them when they saw me stop coaching, they could stop playing. One girl told me at the end of the season, “When I wanted to quit, I would look over and see you were still working hard and I kept playing. I wanted to be like you.” I was flattered, but truthfully, my challenge to them was also a challenge to myself. I didn’t want anyone to be able to say, “I saw you had given up, so I did too.”

I love the line from the Dylan Thomas poem: “Do not go gentle into that good night. Rage, rage against the dying of the light.” It’s what I’m doing when I work out regularly at Planet Fitness. Yes, the end will still come and yes my body will eventually break down, but until then I’m going to be one dangerous old dude.

And so my friends dare to DREAM, dare to HOPE, and dare to LIVE. God expects nothing less from you.

For you formed my inward parts; you knitted me together in my mother’s womb. I praise you, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made. Wonderful are your works; my soul knows it very well. My frame was not hidden from you, when I was being made in secret, intricately woven in the depths of the earth. Your eyes saw my unformed substance; in your book were written, every one of them, the days that were formed for me, when as yet there was none of them. Psalm 139:13-16

My thoughts were originally inspired by John Eldredge’s book, Wild At Heart