In John Huffman’s great book, “How to build an Authentic, Loving Home,” he suggests that there are some things every family needs. Most of these seem readily apparent. He says our families need several things if they are to remain emotional stable and happy. He says every family member needs security, intimacy, and recognition. Of course these make good sense, but # 2 on his list of family needs is adventure. I’ve not considered this as a family need but something that comes along when it comes along. We all have trials and struggles and mountains to climb, new responsibilities to explore, new courses to take, etc. But he means something more than that. Here is what he says.

“Your loved ones have a need for adventure. No life is emotionally whole if there is not a sense of expectancy.
Remember your first business deal. You were working your way through school selling magazines. You were paid by commission. How excited you were with the first $20 you earned! Or perhaps it was your first day in the office on a new job. Remember the enthusiasm with which you arranged and rearranged your papers and settled in behind your new desk? It was probably a modest salary. To you it was a great adventure. Remember that love letter which didn’t come? You went out and said, ‘Mr. Mailman, I am sure there is one more letter in your bag.’ He looked and said, ‘No, I don’t believe there is.’ ‘But there has to be!’ you responded, expecting some word from your loved one. You went through this for the next three days until finally the letter arrived. I feel confident that you have received many letters in your day. But none, I believe, was ever quite as exciting as the one you expected which didn’t come, which made you all the more eager for the day when it finally arrived.” As he concludes this short article, I find myself realizing I haven’t been real good at this as far as my family experience has been concerned. He says, “I know that some of us have settled into bland living. There is no enthusiasm. There is no excitement. There is no joy. Every day has its routine. Even if you can survive on emotional K-rations day in and day out, your partner, your children, your parents need adventure. Are you doing anything to make your family’s life more exciting? Are you planning adventure?”

I’m reminded of Luke 7:37. Jesus said, “Whoever seeks to preserve his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life will keep it.” The man of faith, Abraham, lived an incredibly adventurous life. It was a life of obedience to God’s call. As a Christian that’s the adventure we should pursue. Max Lucado writes, “There is a rawness and a wonder to life. Pursue it. Hunt for it. Sell out to get it. Don’t listen to the whines of those who have settled for a second-rate life and want you to do the same so they won’t feel guilty. Your goal is not to live long; it’s to live. 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 and safe.…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?”