Staying safe will kill you.
Yes, you heard it right. That thing that you are striving so hard to achieve may just be the worst thing for you. I am sure this comes as quite a shock to most people. In fact, it is a statement that many hope to ignore. The quiet voice of Safety will no doubt whisper in your ear to tell you that it isn’t true. But, perhaps deep down, you know that it is.
As Christians, we place a large emphasis on community, and rightfully so. We seek to surround ourselves with Christian people, and Christian schools, all in a God-honoring nation. This is certainly a noble task. We should absolutely seek to promote godliness in ourselves and others. However, I am starting to worry that the Christian bubble we look to create for ourselves…is suffocating us.
Here is the point: we cannot grow if we do not go. An unchallenged faith is no faith at all. If the only friends that we have are Christians, something is wrong. We need to go into the world. We need to thoughtfully and purposefully engage with others who do not think the same as us. We need to take risks and place ourselves in situations that are uncomfortable and hard. Ephesians 6 commands us to “take up the whole armor of God”…because he expects us to go into battle.
Understandably, this sounds like a scary proposition. What if you don’t know what to say to people? What if the sin that surrounds you causes you to fall? What if Christianity suddenly appears silly and fake? Friend, let me tell you from personal experience that the further into the darkness you go, the brighter the light will shine. When we venture into the world and experience things for ourselves – not just read about them – we find that Christianity is more real, not less. It is then that the Bible becomes alive – becomes a necessity. It is then that the Christian community becomes important – not because it protects us – but because it rejuvenates us. The love that we have for God’s word and God’s people will increase when we meet each other after engaging in battle. After all, it is not the civilians who most appreciate food and company, but the soldiers.
I do not know what this looks like for you – it is different for all people. Yet it is something that each of us must come face to face with. Are we being too safe? What shall we do? I cannot answer for you. But, what I can say, is that when we step out of our comfort zones and our self-constructed “bubbles,” God will be with us. But I suppose that is the real point, isn’t it? When we remove our blanket of safety, we have nowhere to turn but to God. He is the one who must lead. He is the one who must provide. He is the one who must protect. And think of the joy we will have when we experience for ourselves that He always follows through.
“God is our safe place and our strength. He is always our help when we are in trouble.” – Psalm 46:1
An unchallenged faith is no faith at all.