(Stock photo/Marcio Silva) What if you weren’t totally committed to the ride? What if you just put one foot on the seat because you were not sure you wanted to commit? The train would leave the station and you would be standing there watching. You would miss the ride.
The Thrill of Commitment
JULY 03, 2008Craig Harris, HappyNews ColumnistI love going to amusement parks and riding the roller coasters. The bigger and faster the better. But there is that moment, just before you take off, that is always unnerving to me. You are strapped in and completely at the mercy of the park. You have buckled your seat belt and pulled the harness over your shoulders. I remember thinking, “If this thing goes off the tracks and lands up-side-down, I’m stuck in here.” It’s a claustrophobic feeling. But that is all part of the thrill. What you are is totally committed to the ride. You are strapped in and there is no turning back. It seems like forever and then, finally, you take off and it is all worth it. At first you are slowing going up and up, and you are wondering what it’s going to be like when you arrive at the top and zoom down the other side. You are looking at buildings way off in the distance, and the people down below are getting smaller and smaller. Then you reach the top and off you go. You zip around, just knowing your train is going to fall off the tracks. But it doesn’t. It turns out to be a ton of fun. Then, it pulls back into the station and they release you, and you run to the end of the line to go again. What if you weren’t totally committed to the ride? What if you just put one foot on the seat because you were not sure you wanted to commit? The train would leave the station and you would be standing there watching. You would miss the ride.I contend that many aspects of our lives are the same way. Parenting, marriage, the pursuit of dreams -- if we only partially commit, we will be left standing at the station.It takes total commitment to so many things or they simply do not work. A half-hearted parent or partner is not going to see the ride through. We must be strapped in and committed. We click the buckle and say, “I’m not backing out. I’m putting my whole life into this journey and I’m not leaving this seat until the ride is over. There may be ups and downs and some scary moments, but I‘m going to grit my teeth and face whatever is thrown at me.”Our spouses know how committed we are. It’s not just a one-time vow on our wedding day, it’s a lifetime of decisions, day after day. Hardships can be a blessing because they prove our level of devotion. No roller coaster provides much thrill if it isn’t at least a little scary and imposing. You walk under it and look up and say, “No way.” But then you’re glad you tried it.True faith is like this too. The only way to experience the thrill of the ride is to be totally committed to it. You cannot dabble in it. You must place your whole self into the seat and strap in.So, totally commit yourself to life. Strap in and get ready for a thrill. Put your body on the line and your life in the seat. Give your children your total commitment. Give your spouse and your friends your total self. Strap in and see where your faith takes you. Click the buckle and pull the harness over your shoulders. God has a thrill ride planned for you, but you have to get into the seat to experience it.
You can contact Craig Harris at lcraigharris.blogspot.com