Life in Community

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Life in Community

A (Dangerous?) Leap of Faith

August 14, 2019 by

It was just a little late-summer silliness. A handful of guys hanging out at the swimming area at Maple Ridge Bruderhof the other evening decided to try out a new sport: put a life-jacket on a bike to keep it from sinking, get on, kick off, and pedal onto (and off) the diving board for all you’re worth.

Their audience, which included me, was mostly sauna-goers at the end of the same pond. Before long we were all offering advice, cheering (or booing) the contestants, and recording the event so as to be able to share it…with you.

Watching the spectacle, it occurred to me that though I’d heard the phrase “a leap of faith” a million times, this was the first time I’d ever seen it literally illustrated. And so I thought: what a chance for witnessing!

 
Seriously: whether you’re pulling up your stakes and moving again (that would be my wife and I, for the umpteenth time), starting a new job (ditto), returning to school or entering the job market, discerning your calling, breaking off a friendship or relationship, getting married, retiring – whatever the case may be – leaving the comforts of the familiar and embarking on a new stage of the journey always entails taking risks. In other words, it requires jumping into the unknown, with all its inherent possibilities and dangers. Making “a leap of faith.”

I’ve heard the phrase “a leap of faith” a million times but this is the first time I’ve ever seen it literally illustrated.

Like most religious clichés, this one is hackneyed to the point of being mildly annoying. And yet, the action it describes is an apt metaphor for an unavoidable step that crops up on every path through life, often repeatedly. But enough preaching.

As my video shows you, each leap of faith is entirely different. One will be graceful. It might even have bounce. One will end with an undignified splash. No matter how much dithering and soul-searching precede it, one is always sure to go completely lopsided.

If you’re lucky, the worst-case scenarios and closest calls will (as happened the other night) escape being recorded for posterity. But a jump is a jump. And no matter the circumstances, or who’s watching, there’s only one thing to do afterward, especially if you land in deep water. Sink or swim.

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About the author

Chris and Bea Zimmerman

Chris Zimmerman

Chris Zimmerman and his wife, Bea, live at Maple Ridge, a Bruderhof in Ulster Park, New York.

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