I recently read a story about penguins. I don’t know if it’s true or not, but the author of the book wrote this amazing paragraph about them, and I would like to share it with you this morning. “In order to find out if the water is safe, one of the birds jumps in—a first penguin. It’s a risky venture. Sometimes the results are disastrous, at least for the first penguin, but at other times the first penguin becomes a leader. He or she jumps in and everyone else follows and swims together...Jump in. Be a first penguin!” Gary R. Collins, PhD. Helping Others Turn Potential into Reality, Christian Coaching, Second Edition.
Sometimes we humans don’t want to be the first one to take a risk. Jumping in first is, well...RISKY! But if we don’t dive into what God has planned for us, we are lacking in faith, the very impetus that propels us forward. It’s easy to do the safe thing, the secure thing, the KNOWN thing. It is much more difficult to do the risky thing, the unsure thing, the hard thing. Dare I even say how difficult it is to do the thing that makes us wake up sweating and shaky in the middle of the night? According to Dr. Collins, we operate on a 90% rule. In other words, there is a 10% discrepancy in our thinking. It is that ten percent that we don’t talk about, we don’t deal with, and we even try not to think about. But it is that very ten percent that Jesus is calling us to bring to Him. He calls us to bring those things into the light and deal with them. That ten percent is what hinders us from being a “first penguin.” It is that ten percent that holds us back from achieving our hopes, dreams and visions. We like our comfort zones. They are exactly what they say...”comfortable”. We spend years building a mental and physical place where we can live and not be challenged. I don’t believe Jesus ever called his disciples to that type of life! How hard was it for Peter to leave his fishing business and follow an unknown Rabbi? Or for Paul to stop being a Pharisee, a lifestyle that appealed to his meticulous nature? Or for Noah to build an ark when he’d never even seen rain? Or for Mary to believe God’s messenger and carry the Savior that would change the world? I could go on, but you get the idea. These great men and women of the Bible are people I want to emulate, but I will never emulate them sitting on my sofa. No, I must be a “first penguin.” I must get off my couch, leave the comfort of my “zone” and launch myself into the water. I imagine the water will be cold. I can’t swim, so I imagine the water will be scary. I imagine there are predators waiting on just such a reckless penguin as myself. These things, when taken in perspective of eternity, really do not matter at all. What matters is what do we do with what God gives us? Let’s grab hold of our ten percent and jump together! Let’s be the first to say, “Yes, there were pitfalls, and yes, it was scary, but come on in! The water is fine!!” God bless! Have a wonderful day!
The first penguin taking a flightless leap of faith!