The TerraNova Blog

Turning our backs on the "American Dream"

LYLE: As we've been moving through this teaching series on the Beatitudes of Jesus, have you noticed  that they move us away from the "American Dream."  Whether or not we care to admit it, the South Orange County world that we live in tantalizes us to latch on to goals that are really all about us.  They wisper at us:  Win.  Be Happy.  Protect yourself from risk.  Put your best foot forward.  Apply the "killer instinct" in not only sport, but your career and your relational life too.   On top of all this, there's this message that you must  acquire and insulate, so you will be secure.  You will be safe.

And  yet...stuff happens. Sometimes bad things happen.  But what is more terrifying than having something bad happen is to have nothing happen at all.

Modern society, of course, has perfected the art of having nothing happen at all.  There is nothing particularly wrong with this except that for vast numbers of Christians in the US, life has become staggeringly easy.  And with that, truly unfulfilling.  Our lifestyle goals often revolve around eliminating as many unforeseen events as possible, and as appealing as that seems initially, it’s a death sentence to your soul.

This week I did a word study on a favorite word of mine that seems to counter this.  The word is adventure.  The word comes from the latin adventura meaning “what must happen.”  An adventure , then, is a situation where the outcomes are not under your control.  It’s up to God, in other words. 

As we soak ourselves in Jesus'  words about how to live a truly beautiful life, we're suspecting that God really desires us to live different lives, lives that are compelling, up-side down kinda lives, where we give up control and replace it with willingness.  What do you think?  Would you rather your life be one of ease or adventure?