My Midlife Project

Remodeling a Middle-Aged Mom

What Are You Risking?

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“What are you risking?”

That’s the question that popped up on my computer screen this morning. It appeared shortly after I read an email with the title “Do Something That Scares You.” The email included the following statement:

“People who have made a difference in the world began by doing something uncomfortable.” (Jeff Goins)

Jeff’s statement echoed a message from another Jeff – Jeff Jones, my pastor. The name of yesterday’s sermon at church was “The Call”. The message referenced scriptures in Exodus 4.

The 4th chapter of Exodus always makes me nervous. Emotional. Fidgety. Scared. Uncomfortable.

“Moses said, ‘Please, Lord, send someone else.’” (Exodus 4:13, NCV)

In January of 2006, I began ambitiously following a 365-day Bible reading plan at 4 times the normal pace. I don’t remember why I decided to do it. I just set out to read through the Bible in 90 days and picked a plan with variety. The scheduled readings were from different parts of the Bible each day.

Right around the beginning of February, Exodus 4 was in my daily plan. When I read it, I freaked out. Chill bumps. Tears. The whole messy deal.

Why? Because I was in the midst of an internal struggle involving a risk. I’d been asked to apply for a job as Manager/Executive Director of a local nonprofit. I knew it would be challenging. I knew it would be life-changing. I knew it would be fulfilling.

I knew I didn’t want to do it.

I normally read my Bible early, but I didn’t get around to it that morning. Three different people approached me during the day. Three people who don’t know each other crossed my path. All three said the same thing: “Brenda, you really should apply for that nonprofit job.”

My response to all three of them was the same: “Lord, here I am. Send somebody else!”  Then I chuckled, brushed them off and walked away — or hung up the phone.

When I went home that night and read my Bible before going to sleep, I stopped chuckling. Although I had thought of Isaiah 6:8 when I flippantly replied to everyone (“Here I am. Send me!”), I realized in my reading of Exodus that Moses had said almost the exact words. But he wasn’t laughing.

I cried.

And I realized I couldn’t say, “Send somebody else!” any longer.

Seven years later, I’m at another fork in the road. This time, I don’t have a consensus of people telling me what they think I should do. In fact, I’m not even sure most people realize I’m at a decision point.

That’s okay. I didn’t know it either… until I began to sense that “change” was in the air. Something is getting ready to happen. I don’t know what. I just know it’s coming.

And I know it involves RISK.

Another quote from Jeff Goins’ email:

“We never worry about competency when we’re comfortable. We’re just trying to maintain what we’re doing, which isn’t much. We only worry when we’re taking risks, when we’re stepping out into the unknown. And that’s a good thing. It’s how we find our life’s work: not by sitting still, but by doing something.”

What are YOU risking? What would you be doing now if you knew you couldn’t fail? What is keeping you from doing that thing? 

photo by: KV*Photography

About Brenda

Morning person. Introvert. Longtime runner. Erratic sleeper. Fitness junkie. Lifelong learner. Coffee addict. Volunteer. Health/Wellness advocate. Coach. Blogger.

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