About a year ago, a wonderful friend, whom I have known for many years, let me in on a little secret. Her husband thought I was reckless. Now, before your jaw drops at the incredulousness of this remark, there are two very important things you must know.
I love this couple dearly and know them both well enough to know that his comment was not meant to be condescending in any way, shape or form. It was more of a comment of how differently I do things than his wife does- and how much he loves the way his wife does things.
He is right!
This one comment has become the root of many laughs between my friend and I, and evidence that God makes us all differently; and how despite those sometimes radical differences, we can encourage one another in love and share the same faith in Christ. We are constantly holding each other accountable- then frequently crying from laughter at how differently we handle some of the circumstances we encounter. I think God puts people in our lives that approach things in a way we could never imagine for many reasons- not the least of them being to learn new things- or simply appreciate what we have! ;)
More recently, I have also had the word “irresponsible” used to describe some of our choices by another friend who loves us. While initially, my hairs bristled in self defense, I realized something after that as well.
I love this person dearly and know that this comment was out of love and concern for me and my family's well being.
She is right!
Compared to the logical, safe, normal life I have lived up to this point, most of the choices we are making now don't make sense. They aren't logical. They aren't safe. They aren't normal.
They are Reckless and Responsibly Irresponsible.
Ever since I was a little girl, I have loved to read. LOVED it. As a busy mom, with lots of things pulling for my attention, it more often than not fell to the wayside. I am fortunate to be able to read quickly, so every once in awhile I would get a book in before bed, but not as often as I would like. Being at home full time again has given me a lot of time back for reading (the pick-up lines for school every day give me almost an hour, and not having a TV now helps even more!) and I am finding that God has blessed me in the books I have been reading. They are drawing me closer to Him than I could have imagined.
Two of the books, Crazy Love and Wild Goose Chase, are books that our mission group agreed to read prior to our trip. I have also listened to a few free downloads in the car, like The Mark of the Christian.
The last book I read, literally made me laugh out loud when I saw it on the library shelf as I was looking for another title. It's called Reckless Faith. I couldn't NOT pick it up! (and of course thank my friends for giving me the label- or I wouldn't have thought twice about it.)
(and we have since joked that I NEED to get a t-shirt saying “RECKLESS” made now!) :)
Here are some of the words from the books that have been reaffirming God's truth to Joe and me over the last few weeks.
From Reckless Faith (Beth Guckenberger):
"God loves it when the giver delights in the giving. God can pour on the blessings in ASTONISHING ways so that you're ready for ANYTHING and EVERYTHING, more than just ready to do what needs to be done. As one psalmist puts it, "He throws caution to the winds, giving to the needy in reckless abandon." 2 Corinthians 9:7-9 MSG (emphasis mine)
"In the same way, anyone who holds on to life just as it is, destroys that life. But if you let go, reckless in your love, you'll have it forever, real and eternal." John 12:25 MSG
"[We] had a defining moment- and experience that impacted our thinking, touched our hearts, and compelled us into a new course of action. It changed our lives. I used to be afraid of that word, change, as if it implied, somehow, that I need to be corrected. But now I have a different view of change. It is a shift in perspective and not the "Extreme Home Makeover" kind of change we see on television. It is a shift
- in what we think we are capable of
-in where we want to see our life heading
-in how we are willing to spend our time, talents, and resources
When people tell me how God "moved" them, it is that kind of shift, I believe, that they are talking about. It's a step in a new direction that we couldn't have taken on our own."
"Reckless faith isn't determined by circumstances; It is born and can grow daily in the quiet moments when my flesh and spirit collide and I decide to let it happen."
"Reckless faith always has one foot in eternity. It measures people by their actions and not their belongings. A reckless faith believes when there is NO evidence and hurls itself at what is unseen but promised. A reckless faith isn't "refined" in the least. That sort of "refined faith" is predictable and resistant to change. It fears what it can't see. A truly reckless faith knows there is more to the story, more we can't see, more than I experience now. It is hungry."
From Wild Goose Chase (Mark Batterson):
“Faith is not logical. But it isn't illogical either. Faith is theological. It does not ignore reality; it just adds God into the equation. And at the end of the day, faith is trusting God more than you trust your own assumptions.”
“Come on, if God can keep the planets in orbit, don't you think He can reorder your life when you feel like it's spinning out of control?”
“Sometimes the will of God feels downright irresponsible. You are called to make a decision or take a course of action that seems to make no sense. And if you do it, the people closest to you may think you are crazy. Even Jesus' family felt that way about Him. But responsible irresponsibility means refusing to allow your human responsibilities to get in the way of pursuing the passions God puts in your heart.”
Joe highlighted one of his self-realizations gained from reading Crazy Love in his blog Journaling Joe. I planned on adding some of my favorite quotes from it here as well, but Logan took it to read, so... I can't...this time.
I read each of these books AFTER making the initial running leap Joe and I felt God was calling us to make. I have found myself craving more scripture, more foundation. Just like the author of Reckless Faith, I am HUNGRY.
And I don't want to go back to safe.
I don't want to go back to logical or normal.
God's love and provision for our family have been shown clearly to me and I know I can trust Him with everything life brings. But more than that, I want to do more than just add God into the life I am already living. More and more each day, I want to live my life completely for His purpose, whatever and wherever that leads to. Because I know the following:
“He who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion.” Phil 1:6
What more assurance do I need than that?