Tobogganing with Jesus

donnahartEncouragementLeave a Comment

Tobogganing can be a great rush of adventurous fun.  I remember as child how much we enjoyed tobogganing on a moonlit night.  We would hike up the hill and take turns being in the front seat to steer the toboggan.  The person who steers the toboggan helps you get down the hill safely and navigates the fun.  The snow is flying in your face as the toboggan speeds down the hill.  We have to lean our bodies together with the person steering the toboggan, when we don’t the toboggan tips over and we all land in the snow.  There is the thrill of a short ride down the hill and then we all trudge back up the hill.

Imagine the adventure of a toboggan ride with Jesus in the driving seat?  He takes you for the ride of your life down the steepest mountain; can you imagine the thrill of speeding down the mountain.  The snow flying in your face as you lean around from behind His shoulder.  He would navigate the hazards of trees, hidden rocks, and fallen trees that he could only see under the snow.  You get to enjoy the rush of adventure, the beauty of His creation, and the safety of His guiding nearness.  We get behind Jesus on the toboggan because we live and lead with a deeper purpose.

The search for meaning and purpose is one of the most powerful and enduring themes in every culture.  It shows up in stories as early as Homer’s The Odyssey.  The power of purpose is woven just as deeply through modern culture, in movies ranging from Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade, which retells the story of Perceval’s search for the Holy Grail through the swashbuckling character of Indiana Jones; the Star Wars trilogy, in which Luke Skywalker faces down his own deepest fears by overcoming Darth Vader and the Evil Empire and rescuing Princess Leia.  These movies deftly play the archetypal themes of the search for meaning and the triumph of good over evil.

The deepest motivation for leading our fellow man to the future is hope.  Hope makes it possible for us to look beyond the fulfillment of pressing desires and offers a vision beyond human suffering and death.  A Christian leader is a person of hope.  A person who finds their strength not in their own self-confidence, but on a promise given to them.

This promise enabled Abraham to travel and live in an unknown land.  It inspired Moses to lead his people out of slavery.  It is the guiding motive for every Christian; hope keeps pointing to new life even in the face of corruption and death.

Hope prevents us from clinging to what we have and frees us to move away from the safe place and enter unknown and fearful territory.  Leaving the safe place is a difficult act of leadership.  It is an act of discipleship in which we follow the hard and adventurous road of Christ, who entered death with nothing but hope, (Hebrews 6:9-20).   “… Christ in you, the hope of glory, (Colossians 1:27-29).  Is it time for you to get on the toboggan behind Jesus to live and lead with hope?

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