Danger – the possibility that you will be hurt or killed. : the possibility that something unpleasant or bad will happen. a person or thing that is likely to cause injury, pain (Merriam-Webster Dictionary)
What do you do when the “Danger Light” flashes; when the “Warning Siren” screams, or the door down the hall creaks as it opens slowly?
Most of us run.
So I was reading my Bible this morning and saw a different reaction to danger.
It was night time. Jesus was just about to be betrayed by his “friend”, Judas. Here’s how St. John tells the story:
Jesus crossed the Kidron Valley with his disciples and entered a grove of olive trees. Judas, the betrayer, knew this place, because Jesus had often gone there with his disciples. The leading priests and Pharisees had given Judas a contingent of Roman soldiers and Temple guards to accompany him. Now with blazing torches, lanterns, and weapons, they arrived at the olive grove.
Jesus fully realized all that was going to happen to him, so he stepped forward to meet them.
“Who are you looking for?” he asked“Jesus the Nazarene,” they replied.
“I Am he,” Jesus said.
“He stepped forward to meet them”… even though He knew what was going to happen! They were going to put the ultimate beat down on Him! They were going to humiliate, pound, and ultimately kill Him… but He “stepped forward” anyhow!
He could have run… denied that He was the guy they were looking for… fought back (like some of his disciples wanted to do)… He could have done so many things but instead He chose to… “step forward.”
And in stepping forward He won! He soaked up the hardest beatings, greatest humiliation, worst names, and ugliest death the thugs could parcel out, and then He came back!
Jesus is so courageous! He knew that the BIG WIN was on the other side of the BIGGEST DANGER… so He stepped forward!
I read this and wonder… Have I run away from things that I should have stepped forward to meet? Has my fear kept me from the biggest and best? What has the fear of pain, embarrassment, and betrayal kept me from experiencing?
Today I’m going to live with these words on the front of my brain, “Jesus fully realized all that was going to happen to him, so he stepped forward to meet them,” and pray for courage to “step forward” when the time arises.