Saturday, November 09, 2013

The Road Well Travelled

If I’ve learned anything…it is that true, real inspiration and growth only comes from adversity and from challenge from stepping away from what’s comfortable and familiar and stepping out into the unknown. In life we all have tempests to ride and poles to walk to and I think metaphorically speaking we could all benefit from getting outside the house a little more often if only we could sum up the courage.—polar explorer Ben Saunders in a TED talk

Sometimes I wish I’d taken the road well travelled. There were times I stepped out in faith and fell flat. I’ve had great adventures as well. Still I can’t help but think I could have been making money and living in that nice little house with the white picket fence. Truly there’s no guarantee that my rear-view vision would have come true. More than likely the little house would have come crashing down or someone would have tripped over the fence and sued me. Truly taking the safe road would have robbed my soul of joy and sent me into mind numbing depression.

It’s difficult to be wired like that though, isn’t it? To dream dreams is to open oneself up to serious disappointment. To act on the dream is to open us up to embarrassment at best and ruin at the worst.

Ben Saunders has seen the light (and the Aurora Borealis). If we are to be inspired and grow we have to leave our doorstep. If we are to inspire others we must set the example; we must walk the walk. We have to invest in people and adventures we find valuable. There is a cost involved.

There’s a price tag either way. Staying safe, warm and insulated from the world will cost something. Stepping out seems the scarier but in my mind the cost is less. Soul is satisfied as is that gnawing hunger for adventure that so many of us feel. Not stepping out is safe and death knell all at once.

The tempests that life chooses for us to ride can wall us in. Keeping that vision of that next adventure, the far country, is how sanity is maintained. Wisdom tells us that without vision a people perish. Still the sight of that safe little home with all the creature comforts will call to our flesh, “Be warm, safe and comfortable.” True adventure has a deeper call; to a satisfied soul, a lived life and a spirit ever deepening.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

See, that's exactly why I want to buy a house in Southern France--it's the best of both worlds, because it is a house in which I can feel safe and warm but it is also in a foreign country, so there's that whole element of the adventure of learning a new culture and language and local history and building relationships. And then there's the cheese...