Faith and leaps are connected…for a reason. Faith leads us to a ledge. When faith really guides us we find ourselves at an edge asking the question all followers of Jesus will ask – do I take the next step?
This is where I am.
It’s a bit exaggerated because whatever I do next I am blessed. An amazing family and extraordinary friends have helped me pray, think, and dream about what comes next. My decisions are definitely of the first world variety. If it is important to live a life that matters, however, then the decision rises in its significance. We want to jump into something meaningful, otherwise the leap was not worth making and we will die at least a little in the attempt.
I like what Kierkegaard called leaps of faith. He actually did not call them that, preferring to call them leaps to faith. When we make a decision based on what we believe we are changing from one way of living to another. There is a sense that one really can’t go back because in a true leap to faith we are becoming something new.
So do I take the next step? I cannot see exactly how it will turn out. I might fail. In spite of the fact I know Jesus is always with us, uncertainty about outcomes always produces second-guessing – are you sure you really want me to do this? None of this changes the situation though…
You either jump, or you don’t.
It’s the truth of the ledge.
A story that has helped me is in Luke 16, the Rich Man and Lazarus. In the story, a rich man persistently ignores a beggar outside his gate. Lazarus, the beggar, is described this way – His best friends were the dogs who came and licked his sores. Both men die and their situations reverse. From hell the rich man asks Abraham for Lazarus to comfort him from Lazarus’ place in heaven. But Abraham answers this is impossible…
… in all these matters there is a huge chasm set between us so that no one can go from us to you even if he wanted to, nor can anyone cross over from you to us.’
The rich man could have jumped the gap and gotten to know the beggar at his door. He did not, and then discovered a gap he could not cross.
Maybe it’s time for all of us to leap?
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