Ambition is a powerful force. It has driven us to dive into oceans, explore uncharted territories, and reach for the stars. Starting a new project with a new goal brings with it an exciting, even giddy feeling - one that comes whenever we're face to face with great potential.
Ambition is a powerful force.
One thing I love to do is listen to ambitious people talk about what they're up to. Writers, artists, directors, CEOs, entrepreneurs - anyone who is running after an ambition. I love the way they can get you excited about something you didn't even know existed, and all because they care so much about reaching a goal. Connecting with other ambitious folks inspires us, not so much to do what they're doing but to find and do that thing that we love and believe in.
We need ambitious people to inspire us.
I think the early American pioneers were nuts. They absolutely should not have ventured into the frontier/wilderness/Nebraska without better equipment and more preparation. But they did. Can you imagine it? Put everything you own in a bag or on a wagon, start walking West, and don't stop until you get somewhere that isn't on the map yet. Somewhere uncharted. Talk about a giddy, exciting feeling - coupled with at least a little fear.
The Christian's frontier is evangelism.
It's unquestionably nerve-wracking to try to introduce faith-related talk into a conversation. Even when you're talking with someone who knows you're a Christian, there's a real and justifiable fear factor in bringing up Jesus - especially when you know that the person you're talking to doesn't believe in God. Carrying nothing more than the Scripture you understand and the things you believe, you're going to try to venture into what is, for Christianity, uncharted territory: the heart of an unbelieving person. Every new heart, like every new bend in a river, is going to be different and unpredictable. Every new person is going to bring a new set of challenges that have never been arranged in the same way before. It's unexplored and wild, and if you look at it with fear you will do nothing more than stay where you are and pray that the wild gets domesticated.
But if you look at it with ambition, if you yearn to explore more deeply the heart of those who do not know God, if you are inspired by the potential for impact that you can glimpse as you peer into the heart of someone mired in denial - fear is replaced by excitement. Why go to the moon? Why cross the Mississippi? Why dive down a continental rift? Because it's going to be amazing. It will be fascinating and valuable. Because amazing things that take place in the future may very well be built on the back of this adventure.
Sharing Jesus with people who hate him, who ignore him, who don't understand him, and who need him is an unbelievable adventure. Just ask Peter, or Paul, or Philip, or John. Ask Goetzinger, Quandt, or Spiegelberg, or Bourman. Surround yourself with people who are telling stories of their Faith's ambition, and feel that giddy excitement that comes when you stand face to face with great potential.
And go. Explore. Don't live every second of your life in already-charted-territory.
Meet people who aren't like you.
Find people who aren't afraid to speak negatively about God.
Befriend the skeptics.
Have conversations about questions you can't answer yet.
See through other's eyes.
And if you're thinking that it's dangerous, that you might be led astray if you spend so much time around people walking in darkness, that's understandable. But that doesn't mean you shouldn't do it. It just means you should be careful. Don't isolate yourself from other believers. Don't quit studying and learning. Don't forget to worship and give yourself time to spiritually rest.
But also, don't miss out on the adventure of 10,000 lifetimes. Preach, teach, share, show, explore, and discover. Find and claim something new in the name of the gospel.