Thursday, January 9, 2014

(hardly) risking it all

When you put something in the  mailbox after the mail for the day has already come, you still have nearly 24 hours to retrieve it. Believe me, I thought about this.
even the flag looks rejected

This morning, I reveal my first #RiskRejection. It's a journey a group of brave souls are on together. Women who would rather risk rejection than risk missing out on God's road for their lives. That, my friends, is a potent force of women. I am anticipating great things. 


I'm just not sure, as I write this, that those great things are going to come from me. See, even in RiskRejection, I am worried that I am not doing it right, I am not risking enough, I am not as good as others. I don't deserve to be in this company of women. Stupid, stupid, stupid lies. But I know I am not the only one ever attacked by them.


And this morning as I ponder what to write, I have learned something really important about that fear. But first--the risk.


I chose to take several risks, one a week is the general plan, though I am never all that great at sticking to plans. I put the first one in the mailbox Monday. Basically, I floated an idea to another author asking her to collaborate on a book idea. Not such a biggie, right? Except that SHE is a biggie. A real biggie. A name you would know instantly if I mentioned it here. And I am anticipating a curt reply from her agent saying, "Thanks, but no thanks, we didn't even show this to her, you overly-ambitious twit who should never even have thought such preposterous thoughts."(Yes, and all those synonyms.) Oh, and "We fart in your general direction." 


But I did it because, well because I've had this idea rolling around in my head for a couple years now, and I know it's a good one, and I've been too ridiculously cowed by the thought of the rejection that would follow to follow through. Enter Amy and RiskRejection. And I knew this was the first thing I had to do. So, it's done. I did not retrieve that letter, and to do so now would be a federal offense and I'm not into that much risk. It's winging its way to California, where it will be a lot happier than in the deep freeze of Chicago, at any rate.


And as I wondered what I would write about this, I read my Scriptures for the morning, and this is what I found.



When he came to the village of Nazareth, his boyhood home, he went as usual to the synagogue on the Sabbath and stood up to read the Scriptures. The scroll of Isaiah the prophet was handed to him. He unrolled the scroll and found the place where this was written:

“The Spirit of the Lord is upon me,

    for he has anointed me to bring Good News to the poor.
He has sent me to proclaim that captives will be released,
    that the blind will see,
that the oppressed will be set free,
and that the time of the Lord’s favor has come.

He rolled up the scroll, handed it back to the attendant, and sat down. All eyes in the synagogue looked at him intently. Then he began to speak to them. “The Scripture you’ve just heard has been fulfilled this very day!”
Everyone spoke well of him and was amazed by the gracious words that came from his lips. “How can this be?” they asked. “Isn’t this Joseph’s son?” Then he said, “You will undoubtedly quote me this proverb: ‘Physician, heal yourself’—meaning, ‘Do miracles here in your hometown like those you did in Capernaum.’ But I tell you the truth, no prophet is accepted in his own hometown. (Luke 4)

And what happened after this? Oh, they just tried to kill him. No big deal. All in a day's work. And it was. That's the thing.

I realized it doesn't matter the size of my risk. Or its likelihood of success. Or its measure next to anyone else's. Because it's measure will never, ever measure his. He risked rejection from the moment he made the decision to come to this earth. 

"He came into the very world he created, but the world didn’t recognize him. He came to his own people, and even they rejected him." (John 1.10-11)


Jesus, my risk is so paltry in this light. And--and this is the thing that brings me to my knees in astonished worship--you knew the outcome. I fear the possibility of rejection. You knew its certainty from the beginning.

And yet Christmas came. And Friday came. And Easter came. And you barely flinched in the Garden of Gethsemane. For what? For me. And for this world I am part of.


What matters in this RiskRejection thing? Willingness to try. To put it out there. To say, "You know what this feels like, Jesus, so here it is. At your feet. Do what you will." 


Let's do this. Join me. What do you want to risk in 2014? Click the link and join us.



14 comments:

Mary said...

I'm sitting here laughing at your imagined response of said famous author's agent. . . . you're funny. But I totally get how you feel. No one wants to be rejected, but I love that you are jumping in head first with the rest of us to take risks that we would have otherwise ignored, because frankly, that's more comfortable. ;) Cheering you on from Charleston, SC! You. Go. Girl.

PinkStripeySocks said...

Love your words and love your heart..

Positively Alene said...

This is awesome. Love that you didn't get it back out of the mailbox -- I think I might have been tempted. I can't wait to hear the end of this story -- may they answer you soon. Woot!!! for you.

Amy Sullivan said...

Oh my. So after each of the risks I read, I get a big rush! The bravery of others is contagious.

Now, I did something similar only through FB this week. I am sharing about it next week, but helllllloooo, a real letter? Now that is the way to go. Who forgets a real letter?

"Even the flag looks rejected…" You crack me up.

Amy Sullivan said...

Oh, wait, I almost forgot. Are you going to tell us the results?

Meredith said...

You are CRAZY BRAVE- and I love it, and I am inspired by it.
Oh how grateful I am to be part of this wild and fearfully obedient women!

Can't wait to follow your journey -- and pray alongside you every step of the way!

lisa said...

Inspiration! Thank you.

jill said...

I didn't say I wasn't tempted . . . ;)

jill said...

Thanks so much. Cheering you on as well.

jill said...

Laughing together makes it a little easier, doesn't it?

jill said...

If I get any, you all will be the first to know.

jill said...

Thanks. It's been fun so far!

jill said...

I'm so glad. I just realized the verse at the top of your blog is my life verse.

Sharita Knobloch said...

You make me laugh, Jill. (And not in a "oh she's such a twit" laugh-- but rather "even the flag looks rejected" and "we fart in your direction." Hilarious.)

Taking that first step is sometimes the biggest risk. And regardless of the outcome, God will certainly reward your obedience.

Way to take the leap! Here's to a journey of #riskrejection together!