[Guest Post by Lore Ferguson] -The air in the car was solid, thick with humidity and silence. It was late and it was August. This conversation was going nowhere fast and everywhere slowly.
Tangents kept us from landing on solid ground and fear was keeping us from saying everything swirling inside of us. What he wanted was for me to take a risk on him and what I wanted was for him to take a risk on anything. It was against this wall that we faced the end of the what had barely begun–without risk, no matter how small, we could not move forward.
A friend tells me recently that he likes a girl. “What’s keeping you from asking her out?” I ask him. “Oh, you know,” he said, “it’s a big risk. I mean, she’s pretty well known in our circle, lots of influence, and besides, um, she’s smokin’ hot.”
“So it’s the fear that she’ll say no or that she’ll say yes and you’ll be thrust into the spotlight that she lives in?” I ask.
“Both,” he said.
I tell my friend that day that a girl is a strange thing, a mixture of contradiction and mystery, beauty and complexity.
What she wants is for him to be willing to take the small risk, not because she feels like she’s worth it, but because she wants to know that someday, when the risk is bigger, he’ll take it.
“Um, Lo, what you mean is that you’re a strange thing, a mixture of contradiction and mystery and all the rest? Most girls don’t want a guy who’s going to take big risks someday. They just want a guy who will buy them a big house, give them a few kids, and a big enough closet.”
I smiled and shut up.
What I want to know before I marry you, more than anything else, is will you take a risk?
Not just a risk on me (because my friend is right, I’m complex and confusing, as transparent as I aim to be), but a risk in life together with me?
When you’re faced with the decision to do the easy or expected thing?
Will you step outside of the ease and expectation and will you take a gamble?
Will you turn down the job promotion, even quit your job?
Will you learn something the hard way, just so you can learn it fully?
Will you keep your bank account level and low, and your finances exposed and generous?
Will you give when the world says you deserve a break?
Will you risk all, in the face of the American Dream and your parents expectation and your own expectations and mine too?
Will you go with your gut, knowing that it’s led and comforted and helped by the Holy Spirit?
Because here’s what I promise, if our life together is one of risk, no matter how small, no matter how big, I will follow you and trust you, walk beside you and entrust to you, honor you and speak well of you.
I will know by your risk-taking, that you trust a God who is bigger than your errors, more sovereign than your mistakes, more generous than your poverty, more sufficient than your limitedness. I will know by watching you that you are watching Him and there is no other kind of man I would rather watch and love.
Lore Ferguson is her name. It’s pronounced Lor-ee. Her good friends call her Lo. Her oldest friends call her Lor. Her brothers call her Sister. But her best friends call her Lowly and she hopes she can live down to that. Her life is small and simple. She is a graphic artist by trade and a writer by choice. Read her at Sayable.net and follow her around on twitter @loreferguson.