What is Adventure?

Post By Chris Hartenstein
As I mentioned last week, my son, Judah, and I, along with ten other brave souls, went on an EPIC motorcycle trip to South Africa in 2019. We rode motorcycles through some of the most beautiful and challenging terrain we have ever seen. We also had the opportunity to serve a ministry by assisting with a school building project. It was ten days of pure adventure!    

The trip, once again, made me ponder a phrase we hear a lot: "Born for Adventure!" Personally, it resonates deep within my soul. Inspiring me to push myself and others around me, but it leaves me with a lingering question: What is adventure?

In our current culture, adventure is about the next experience and challenge. It could be the next push up a mountain, through a river, over an obstacle, the next race, or the job. Though this is not a bad definition, my gut says it is incomplete because I find myself desiring more!  

I believe I was created for adventure, not just born for it. A purposeful Creator, whose adventurous spirit I have been created to reflect, placed it in my DNA! Every part of creation dances to the same tune of being adventurous and dangerous - the mountains, the animals, white water, jungles, oceans teem with crazy creatures! Even the city (although it's not my brand of adventure, haha). Adventure is also found in our Heavenly Dad relationally. Not only does our Father give us free will, but He continues to provide us with critical roles to play within His created order and the Greater Story he is writing.

With all of that being said, could adventure be going unnoticed as a part of our everyday life? I believe it is! All around us, our Dad calls us into the unknown, untested, and uncertain. He calls us into places that will take our breath away, require something of us, and push us forward. If we decided to define adventure by who calls us into it versus what we do on it, it would reshape adventures' purpose in our lives. So, what does our Father define as true adventure? Here are some examples...

Adventure is used to teach and train us, revealing where change, healing, and growth are needed and then refining and sharpening us. It is a place for learning about ourselves, our Heavenly Dad, and the world around us. We learn what a loving, caring, and empowering Father we have and what we are truly made of and for!

Adventure can teach us how to be dependent on our Dad while defining and developing a healthy community. Everything is better in community, including us! Adventure is meant to be shared, first, with our heavenly Dad, but also with others.

Adventure is also for pure enjoyment! We have a good Dad who wants to express His loving heart towards us, pulling us out of the normal, predictable, and into something that reminds us we are alive! Where we find rest, space for reflection, and restoration.

Adventure is not the point in and of itself or something to be "worshiped," but it is designed to draw us to who should be worshiped. Adventure is anything that brings us fully alive while revealing different parts of our true heart as sons and daughters. It is A tool used to bring us into deeper intimacy with our heavenly Dad! The closer we are to Him, the more we reflect His character and our glory. The outflow is the impact we make on the world around us. Just like when Peter and John were out preaching and healing in Acts 4:13:
"Now, when they saw the boldness of Peter and John, and perceived that they were uneducated, common men, they were astonished. And they recognized that they had been with Jesus.  
Certainly, they were on an "early church adventure" of spreading the Gospel.

To sum it up!

True adventure is an invitation from our Heavenly Dad into something greater than ultimately builds intimacy with Him, develops His character in us as image-bearers, and increases our impact on the world.
Calibration:
  • How do you currently define adventure? Is it growing you?  Does it satisfy you?
  • How does your definition of adventure potentially need to change? Explain.
  • What is an adventure you know your Dad is asking you to step into? GO FOR IT!!
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