Motivation and Risk-Taking

“Joshua got up early the next morning, and the priests again carried the Ark of the Lord.”  —  Joshua 6:12

Joshua was finally in action. He had spent forty years wandering around in the wilderness with a generation of people under God’s discipline. Through it all, he had protected his integrity and developed his abilities. Now it was time to carry out his dream. So Joshua got up early in the morning.

When life is boring or out of focus, sleeping in is easy. But when life calls you to action and you know what you were made for, you are motivated to do what it takes to live up to that purpose. That includes taking some risks.

In a July 23, 1999, article, the Chicago Tribune tells the story of a group of men in Naperville, Illinois, who gather twice a week to compete in old-timer pickup softball games. Writer Ted Gregory explains that these men risk than pulled muscles and sprained ankles in these games; sometimes they even risk heart attacks from exerting themselves in the hot sun.

Despite the risks, sixty-three-year-old Bill Body explains why he plays: “If I’m going to die, I’m going to die doing what I love doing, whether it’s playing softball, fishing, hunting, or something else.”

After reading about Body’s remarks, writer and editor Mark Galli commented, “We’re often tempted in the church to slow down, cut back, take it easy because we get tired of taking risks–and in Christ’s work, there are a lot of emotional and spiritual risks. But Bill Body is exactly right: life itself is a risk–we’re all going to die. So we might as well get involved, take the risks, and do the things in Christ we really love.”

Indeed, we need to understand that life itself is a risk and that there are some things worth stepping out and taking a risk for. After all, if old men are willing to risk their lives for softball, surely we can risk ourselves for the cause of Christ.


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