These thoughts were recorded in 1998 as I prepared to journey to Eastern Europe for a three-year mission term. On the 20th anniversary of the fall of the wall, I thought I'd re-post them here.
In 1987, I made a choice. I was in Germany and had a free weekend to sightsee. My wife and I had been in Munich a couple of weeks before and I had enjoyed the visit. On this free weekend, I could return to Munich (which was familiar and "known") or I could journey to Berlin (the unfamiliar and "unknown"). I elected to return to Munich and enjoyed the weekend.
Two years later, I watched with millions of others around the world as "The Wall" came down, reuniting the divided city. At that moment I realized I had missed an opportunity that would never again be available to me. I had missed an opportunity because I had opted for the safe, familiar and comfortable destination rather than the one that held some "risk" for me.
For some reason I reflected on this experience this weekend as I thought about the people God brings into my life every day. Some I will never meet again. Others need a kind word of encouragement. Still others may learn something from our encounter that will impact the rest of their lives. For others, God might use the opportunity to draw someone into a personal relationship with Him.
God, help me recognize the opportunities of lifetimes. May I never turn from their challenges by escaping into the familiar and comfortable.
Photo by http://www.flickr.com/photos/fiahless/ / CC BY-NC-SA 2.0