Settling for Secondhand Stories

This past Sunday one of our pastors preached a sermon titled, “I Would Rather Go to the Grand Canyon, than See Pictures of the Grand Canyon.”

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The title peaked my interest because in 2009 the family and I visited the Grand Canyon in person. We stayed with some friends who live in Phoenix, Arizona, and so we took a road trip to see firsthand what had only been experienced through science textbooks, pictures and secondhand stories.

We traveled along Route 66 and saw the desert and the great Sequoia Cactus. We gazed upon the red rocks of Sedona, Arizona. And we visited the intriguing Montezuma’s Castle. But the Grand Canyon trumped all of these sights.

I can sit here and tell you all about it, the beauty of the canyon, the immense depth and width, the coloration in the layers, the winding Colorado River that shaped it. I am sharing some photos which will give you a little better picture of what I’m talking about. But my point–and my pastor’s point–is that until you stand on the rim, feel the wind in your hair, and breath the crisp air, you won’t have a real and true experience of the Grand Canyon.

It’s easy to become locked into our cyber world and daily routines and live a vicarious life. We read stories about what God is doing in other’s lives, and we read about the successes of others. But what steps are we taking to have some truly great experiences ourselves? Experiences that others may want to read about. What is God asking you to step out and do in 2013?

Maybe He wants you to:

Write a book
Start a blog
Lead a discipleship group
Go on a mission trip
Join a ministry
Start a business
Go back to school
Invent something
Build something
Support something

Maybe it’s more about relationships:

Cultivate a new friendship
Apologize to someone
Forgive someone
Reestablish a broken relationship
Pray for someone
Help someone
Ask her to marry you

Only you can fill in the blank, but don’t just settle for reading other people’s experiences the rest of your life. I know it’s scary and you don’t feel “ready.” But to be honest no one is going to be completely ready, and, unless you want to be a brain surgeon, no one’s looking for perfection from you just starting out.

So good luck and godspeed! I wish you the very best on whatever it is you want to experience in 2013. Maybe I’ll get to read about you and your adventures in the coming year.

Happy New Year everyone!

How about you? What in your life do you want to experience and not just read about?

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