The highlight of my fishing career came around age ten. Early before church one Sunday morning I took my Batman kiddie rod and a whopper of a grasshopper out to my grandparents' pond. I wanted to try my luck before leaving for church. To my surprise, the line took off, dragging me right along with it.
Seeing my struggle, my Dad quickly came to assist, sloshing into the mud in his Sunday best. I'm sure the soggy bank of the pond ruined his dress shoes. He wasn't going to let this opportunity pass by for me, though, even if it meant getting down in the mud.
This is one of those memories that made the highlight reel in my mind. Even eighteen years later, I think about it often and how glad I am that my parents were not the type to make me stay inside away from the dirt of the great outdoors before church. I'm glad my dad wasn't the type to shy away from helping me because he was dressed up or because it was going to make us late.
I'm really good at being serious. I'm never the first on the dance floor. I like being by myself. I'm a book over a party personality type. But I know there is a beckoning to come out of my comfort zone. I know there is a part of life missed if you don't let your son fish before church and get down in the mud to reel in a big ole' catfish.
Bob Goff writes about this beckoning in his book Love Does:
"There is only one invitation it would kill me to refuse, yet I'm tempted to turn it down all the time. I get the invitation every morning when I wake up to actually live a life of complete engagement, a life of whimsy, a life where love does. It doesn't come in an envelope. It's ushered in by a sunrise, the sound of a bird, or the smell of coffee drifting lazily from the kitchen. It's the invitation to actually live, to fully participate in this amazing life for one more day."
So be the first on the dance floor. Don't keep your kid from living to keep their Sunday's best from getting dirty. Get down in the mud with someone who needs your help. Jump out of an airplane. Book that trip you've been putting off for a more "convenient" time. Just accept the invitation to live. It only comes once.
Books I recommend: