January 23, 2016

Beautiful Risks By Lynn J Simpson

(Disclosure: I sat to write on our theme, and opened my personal blog where I had written on the subject of risk earlier this month. Reading it, I kind of liked it better than when I wrote it. Is it okay to take a risk and like our own writing? To believe we really do have something of value that resides in us and risk bubbling it out to the world even though it may just be poked at, popped, or not seen at all? And even enough to share it twice? I guess I take that risk today!)

"True enough: Sometimes, our worst fears come to pass. Sometimes, things break. Sometimes, we ourselves are the most broken things of all.
But that’s the thing. To live a beautiful life, we have to take the risk. To live a beautiful life, we have to lose the fear of stepping across the threshold." INCOURGARE (by jennifer dukes lee)

It's only one year, she says. She raises her coffee cup up in the air, like an athlete with the winning trophy, daring me to raise my own. My fingers entwine the warm handle, and I raise up my now empty cup, tap hers with mine, my lips a closed tentative smile. 
Only one year, her words echoing in my mind like stadium applause when the game is over. 
Yes, just one year. 
I think back on why in the previous years I have shrunk back from taking the risk. The risk of focus that means choosing to let go of those things that may be good, but do not move.  Those good things that take your time yet you stay in the same place, year after year.  Kind of like your favorite sports team that places second years in a row, and with frustration you complain. "Get rid of the coach!" you say. 
A new strategy is needed, to make a change.
But bringing in a new coach may not mean the team will win the next year. They may even place third or worse that year. Yet, the new coach is not fired. As leaders know learning new strategies takes time. And third place, although worse than the year before, is a change.  
And change is growth.
Change is movement. 
And even though it might not be in the right direction at first, we have taken the risk to learn, to grow, and to move and change. 
We may even fail but have learned what does not work.
So there really is no failure in taking a risk, and begins with a step of change.
Just one year, she repeats. 
And somehow the risk wrinkles. A year of letting go, building an etched road in time paved with experience in the field where I have picked the identical flower, only the locus changing. 
And things may break, beams may split, turfs may plummet. 
That is the risk. 
Along with the risk of new strategies erupting, new plays to practice for years to come, victorious and conquering. 

And picking beautiful, novel flowers along the way.

Is it time for you to take that risk, embrace that God-nudge of change, or to unfasten from infertile ground? 


Faith is the willingness to risk anything on God. Jack Hyles


  1. "...third place, although worse than the year before, is a change."

    I'm more willing to take a risk, stand up for change when it's only me who will be impacted. When others are involved, when it might upset them... Well that's a whole other story. But one that may need to be written, perhaps for their sake as well as mine.

    You have started me thinking, Lynn.

  2. So many profoundly haunting and beautiful lines... one of my favourites: "her words echoing in my mind like stadium applause when the game is over. " It was definitely worth sharing twice!

  3. Thanks, Lynn
    As I read your post, which evoked powerful images for me, it struck me how we so often see risk as a negative thing. I wonder if we learned to focus on the possibilities that risk opens, if we would be more inclined to take risks?
    This year I'm choosing to trust through some risks I'm taking. Although I instinctively focus on the possibility for failure, I want to focus instead on God and the new things He wants to do in and through me.

  4. Appreciated the rich use of metaphors, and the challenge to take the Beautiful Risk … and the link to the (In)courage post. "And somehow the risk wrinkles." And it is encouraging that you take the risk to like your own writing. Thank you for a wonderful post!! Well done!

  5. "Beautiful risks." What a great phrase. Kind of goes along with being "safely dangerous," doesn't it? Why do we as human beings fight against change so much? Maybe because we equate change with risk. Are they synonymous? Hmmmmmmmm. I wonder.

  6. Thanks for your post about God's perfect timing. As impatient as we can be, we need these reminders often, and you presented this message well.


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