I’ve often quote Bilbo Baggins who responded to Gandalf’s call to his journey across Middle Earth to destroy the one ring. Gandalf told him it would be a wondrous adventure. Bilbo says, “Oh no! Adventures make one late for dinner.” Max Lucado wrote a great little devotion about building a fire in your heart. He writes, “Jesus says the options are clear. On one side there is the voice of safety. You can build a fire in the hearth, stay inside, and stay warm and dry for what you don’t try, right? You can’t fall if you don’t take a stand, right? You can’t lose your balance if you never climb, right? So don’t try it. Take the safe route. Or you can hear the voice of adventure—God’s adventure. Instead of building a fire in your hearth, build a fire in your heart. Follow God’s impulses. Adopt the child. Move overseas. Teach the class. Change careers. Run for office. Make a difference. Sure it isn’t safe, but what is?”

When I read Romans 12:10-11 it reminded me of the call to the life of adventure. Paul tells the believers in Rome this: “Love each other deeply. Honor others more than yourselves. Never let the fire in your heart go out. Keep it alive. Serve the Lord!” (Romans 12:10-11). The Christian life is truly an adventure. Not everyone will truly embark on it. I’ve been playing the new video game called “Skyrim.” It’s about, primarily, being a dragon slayer. It’s set in medieval times and has swords, armor, helmets, spears, breastplates, etc. I can’t help but think about Paul’s explanation to the Ephesians in chapter six about the Christian armor. He says “Put on the full armor of God, so that you can take your stand against the devil’s schemes.” Our enemy is the one that the book of Revelation calls the “dragon.” Paul goes on, “For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms.” This great fire breathing dragon will extinguish every heart’s fire if we’re not “on guard.”

Paul’s exhortation to the Ephesians continues: “Therefore put on the full armor of God, so that when the day of evil comes, you may be able to stand your ground, and after you have done everything, to stand. Stand firm then, with the belt of truth buckled around your waist, with the breastplate of righteousness in place, and with your feet fitted with the readiness that comes from the gospel of peace. In addition to all this, take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one. Take the helmet of salvation and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God.” As you follow your adventures through Skyrim, you encounter guards and citizens who speak to you when you pass by. Several times you will hear them say after you, “I used to be an adventurer like you, but then I took an arrow to the knee.” I don’t want to be one of them!

“The LORD is my light and my salvation; whom shall I fear?” Psalm 27:1