Living So Safely

I just read the horrible news this morning that freestyle motocross legend and 2008 X Games gold medalist Jeremy Lusk was killed in an accident in Costa Rica while trying a Heart Attack backflip.  The thing that really struck me in reading the story was that Jeremy had crashed a couple of times trying this same trick and had actually been injured doing it.  The nature of the trick left a lot of room for serious injury or even death and that didn’t deter him.  I follow freestyle motocross a little bit and I am probably not in the minority in saying that I have wondered for a long time when something like this was gonna happen. It was inevitable.

Yesterday Little and I were watching a video on youtube of some guys somewhere in Norway “flying” in something called a Wingsuit.  These guys have gone one step beyond base jumping and I am sure that it won’t be long until we read about one of them being killed. They freefall at a 100 mph glide along the sides of huge crevasses and deep gorges before pulling a small parachute a couple hundred feet from the ground.  I am amazed at the raw nature of the human spirit in pushing the envelope and living as closely to the edge as possible.

On a smaller scale I see this play out a lot at camp when a person goes over the edge of a rock face on a rappelling trip or when they pull the rip cord on the three man swing.  Something that has been sleeping seems to come alive.  There is an innate pull in the heart of man to push that envelope.  Even in a culture where we make kids wash their hands for 20 seconds before they eat, pop cold medicine at the first sign of a runny nose, buckle up in the car with a NASCAR-esque safety strap system in order to run to the corner mart, wear crash helmets on their power ranger tricycle, and speak with perfect grammar, there is still a spirit that comes alive when we unlock any sense of adventure.

So why do Christians so often live so “safely”.  I mean it is clearly natural for the raw human instinct to push us to do things that are viewed by so many safe people as insanity.  So where is the insanity in the way I am living my faith.  Where is the reckless abandon that Christ lived out and the apostles and martyrs have die with.  I want to live my life in such a way that all that is primordial and wild is unlocked and given wholly to Christ to do with as he pleases.  Wake up, Oh Christian and get off of the couch (or padded church pew).  The gospel call is wild and dangerous and has been costing people their lives for centuries.

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