Many years ago, when Jennifer was a baby and we lived in Hawaii my mom and dad came to visit us. Jennifer was a little over a year old and we all went to the Big Island on vacation. One of the key attractions on the Big Island is the volcano. Mt Kilauea is very active now, but back then it was pretty dormant. In fact, you could drive right up to the top of the crater. Around the opening was a fence to keep people from getting to close and falling in. I know the reason for fences, they are to keep other people from getting hurt. I know that I am smart enough not to get hurt if I cross fences. So that’s what I did.
You see, if you stayed behind that fence you really had a hard time seeing the molten lava bubbling down in the bottom (maybe 200 – 300 feet down). Anyway, by crossing the fence I was able to walk out and lean over the edge and get some great pictures. Of course Julia was telling me to stay behind the fence, and I am sure that Mom and Dad weren’t too happy with my actions either. But I didn’t care. I even took pictures of all the warning signs before I jumped over the fence.
That one example is a picture of how I love to live life, on the edge. It doesn’t matter what I am doing, I just don’t like to “play it safe”. It is a lot more fun and exciting to push the limits than it is to hang back and settle into a predictable lifestyle. Now, I have been burned from time to time by this living on the edge. It hasn’t really worked very well financially for example. But in other areas it makes for a very interesting life.
Spiritually I love living on the edge. I want to be on the tip of the spear in all that God is doing. I don’t want to be left behind in anything. Next year as I help lead the first year of ministry school, I want all the students to have to run as hard as they can just to keep up with me. There are other areas that I love living on the edge. In fact I am not sure of any area of my life where I don’t want to be on the edge.
It’s probably my propensity to live on the edge that pushed me to fly planes, drive convertibles and ride motorcycles. I know it’s the push that causes me to run marathons. I also know that it is what drives me to look at skydiving. I know it’s what pushes me to ride every rollercoaster that I can.
I don’t see anything wrong with living life on the edge as long as you can be smart and weigh the risk against the opportunity. I’m really pretty level headed, and I know my limits. Yes, I push them, but I have priorities that I am not willing to compromise on. Live on the edge sometimes makes you want to overlook you values. You can’t do that or you will wind up falling off. You get a great view of life on the edge. It’s a view that I never want to give up. I always want to live my life on the edge.