Monday, January 16, 2017

Fair Weather is for Sissies

Years ago, when I was flying as a private pilot, I was called a “fair weather" pilot, meaning I only flew if the skies were clear and winds were light. I know – sissy-girl attitude, but I preferred easy-going to my destination with a trouble-free landing. That’s why I was partial to being the co-pilot for my “any weather" husband who was confident, yet cautious, in just about any weather. He loved the challenge of prevailing winds and figuring out his course of action. The more challenging the landing, the more accomplished he became as a pilot.

In sports, the term "fair weather fans" refers to those who have some interest in the team, but they want nothing to do with them when tough times occur. As soon as the team starts to turn things around and starts winning, they act as if they been there through thick and thin.

So here we are after NFL playoff weekend. I segued from my “Seek and Find” time with God (my month-long hiatus), gave Him the hand sign for “Time Out” and watched our family’s two favorite teams: Seahawks and Cowboys play in their playoff games. I’m sure God didn’t mind – He was watching His two favorite teams, too! Juuuust kidding!!! Oh the highs and lows, ups and downs, fair weather and foul weather of watching our teams play. The celebrations when we’re up and the pits in the stomach when we’re losing. Our teams lost, but what a great year it's been! I wondered: “Is it worth it to get all caught up in favorite teams and their games? Wouldn’t it be a better option to be a “Fair Weather Sports Fan” and a “Fair Weather Pilot”? No risks, no worries, safe zones, easy-going, no need for Rolaids, and just be able to live life in the comfort zone of “going with the flow”? But, then again, what a shame it would be to miss potential records being set, our teams winning THE BIG ONE, and being a co-winner with them!

And, about life -- if you've never taken a risk and failed, you've never lived on the edge! I'll never forget "the big one" that my husband and I "bet the farm" on. It was our BIG RISK -- we were going to become wealthy because of our investment in the drilling of an oil well. My husband and our young son, Ryan, stayed at the oil well -- all day and all night, watching and praying, for us to "strike it rich"! But that time -- it was not to be -- it was a DRY well. Disappointed? Yes! Was it a huge risk? Yes! Did it stop us? No! We never quit on taking risks, and I sincerely believe that is one of the reasons why our family met with many successes. Plenty of failures along the way -- but it never stopped us from trying again.

Have you failed at something you so wanted to win at? Did others scorn you for taking a risk.....and, indeed, it was a loser? Have you wished you could step out in faith and become adventurous, but you kept hearing voices that said, "Give up!" "Throw in the towel!" "It's too risky!" "You could lose everything!" "Play it safe!"

Here’s the deal: even the best-laid plans don’t always work out! That’s a reality we all face every day. So how should we live when we’re not sure how things are going to turn out? In Ecclesiastes 11, King Solomon says, “Don’t play it safe—take risks.” In other words, we should live confidently because we have a "No limits" God. We shouldn't avoid being blessed because of the concerns that come with them. We shouldn't say, “I can’t get married. What if difficult struggles come up between me and my mate?” Or, “I can’t have children. What if I'm not a good parent?" Or, “I can’t go for that business opportunity. What if I fail at it?” Or, “I can’t use my savings for that dream trip we’ve always wanted. What if our car breaks down or we have a health crisis and we need that money?”

All those "What ifs" are "Fair Weather" attitudes that keep us complacent and settling for the status quo. No risks – no glory! Life is really about the thrill of the hunt, the expectations of victories and celebrations of wins and even the loses. When we take a deep breath, and hang in there for the highs and lows, and the ups and downs, we’ll be guaranteed a life of grand adventures. Yes, we may get sweaty palms, white knuckles, indigestion, and even some bumps and bruises, but then we remind ourselves, God knows the outcome of the weather so we might as well throw our hands up in the air and enjoy the thrills that await us on this exciting ANY weather ride!!