Ditch the Safety Talk: Live Dangerously

Blog / Produced by The High Calling
1677870719 68cc33e387 o

"You can’t have that out in plain sight," the woman said to me. Her hair was pulled so tight it tugged on her eyes. "Someone might get offended." She then whirled around and walked away, her clackety-clack shoes echoing against the tile floor.

What had offended her? The book, with an obviously Christian title, in my hand as I headed out to lunch.

Shocked as much by her bold intrusion into my reading habits as I was by her pronouncement, it brought to reality a decision that I needed to make: Would I live the life of working safely, tucking my beliefs away? Or would I be God's man, comfortable in the new skin he had put me in?

Considering what was at stake, it wasn’t an easy decision. As a newly hired manager, I had fought through the thicket of at least two dozen applicants for this job. I was entrusted with a big responsibility, a budget, and a supervisory position. Plus I had a family at home, counting on my paycheck.

What else would I have to hide?

What would it hurt to hide that little book? But to do so, I would have to hide a thousand other things. The breakroom, a place full of constant opportunities for coffee pot counseling, would take on a new, muted tone for me. Talking to coworkers in the elevator would be all business, all the time. When I gave my word that a project would be completed, was it backed up with the full faith and confidence that my principles were timeless? Was I willing to hide the eternal perspective I brought to the workplace? When a coworker was found to be in need of a few bucks, a word of encouragement, or a prayer of rescue, was I willing to hide my spirit of generosity?

I knew I couldn't hide. I ditched all thoughts of safety talk, and from that moment on, chose to work dangerously. I have replicated that decision to be courageous and bold about my lifestyle in every other job since.

What would you do if you had no fear?

Consider this story of Mosab Hassan Yousef, the son of Sheikh Hassan Yousef, a founder and leader of the Palestinian terrorist group Hamas.

"… he met a British cabbie in Jerusalem who gave him an English-Arabic copy of the New Testament and invited him to attend a Bible study session at their hotel. 'I found that I was really drawn to the grace, love and humility that Jesus talked about,' he says in [his book] Son of Hamas."

A simple, obedient taxi driver helped lead the son of a Hamas leader to faith! Living dangerously means following that nudge to do the right thing, even when public opinion will probably go against you. It means walking the high wire to reach the other side where the "untouchables," the broken, and the marginalized dwell. It means living on the edge of popular culture with a distinctively unpopular message. Living dangerously sounds scary. But once you've ducked under the "do not cross" tape, you're one step closer to your calling.