Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Risk taking

More and more I'm seeing Lent as an opportunity for cultivating awareness --- for breaking out of our "business as usual" patterns. It was close to twenty years ago that I first saw a Leo Buscaglia presentation on television. I was really impressed with him then and certainly "awareness" was a big theme of his whether he actually used the word or not.

Today, I found something he said that I like very much:

To laugh is to risk appearing the fool. To weep is to risk being called sentimental. To reach out to another is to risk involvement. To expose feelings is to risk showing your true self. To place your ideas and your dreams before them is to risk being called naïve. To love is to risk not being loved in return. To live is to risk dying. To hope is to risk despair, and to try is to risk failure.

But risks must be taken, because the greatest hazard in life is to risk nothing. The person who risks nothing, does nothing, has nothing, is nothing and becomes nothing.
I'm wondering today if one aspect of the temptations of Jesus in the wilderness had to do with urging him to stick with the "tried and true" -- you know, what definitely works. Political power works. Sensationalism works. Giving people what they want works. Jesus, when you think about it, was willing to take risks on a different way.

1 comment:

  1. What have we done so terribly wrong in our society that the things which he identifies as risks are seen as such negatives, when in fact, they are such glorious positives? We have been warped for at least two generations and I fear the next generation is going to be even more warped. Such a shame. I fear the trend is irreversible. May I please be wrong.
    Carolyn L.


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