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Encouragement for Today - Feb. 6, 2009

February 6, 2009


Risky Behavior (The Good Kind!)

By T. Suzanne Eller


Peter said to Jesus, “If it is You, Lord, tell me to come to You on the water.

Jesus said, “Come!” Peter got out of the boat and walked on the water to Jesus.’”

Matthew 14:28-29 (New Life Bible)


A long time ago I took a risk with God. Opening my heart to Him meant that I would be vulnerable. I had learned that if I stepped outside my carefully constructed walls, I could be hurt. Was I willing to let God past those barriers? Letting Him in became a first step in a life of risky behavior - the good kind! My mantra – the beat to which I marched – became “do it afraid.”


God had plans for me that I could never imagine. If I could go back in time, I would find a young girl sitting outside on a curb, afraid to go back into her home because of the chaos. She was hurting. She was angry. She wanted to run away and never come back. I’d wrap my arms around her and tell her that God loves her. That He had plans for her life that she couldn’t even imagine. I’d tell her to take risks.


It was a risk to become an author. It was a risk to become a speaker. But there were other, more personal, risks that came first. It was a risk to believe that I could have a loving, safe and fun family. It was a risk to break free from the entanglements of my past and embrace who God intended me to be. It was a risk to take the mask off and be myself with others.


Every time I took a step outside my comfort zone, I grew spiritually. I discovered God’s destiny rather than operating within the limitations of my own experiences. I discovered a powerful truth along the way: When we take calculated risks, we discover talents and facets of our personality waiting to be developed.


But Suzie, what if I put myself out there, make myself vulnerable, and wind up getting hurt? Fear can be our largest obstacle to stepping out in courage. A step of faith might not look like success to others, but every risk can ignite more courage. But still, what if I fail? Take time to consider the other “what if’s?” …


¨      What if you live in authenticity and discover new and lasting relationships (even with those in your own home)?

¨      What if you face your fears and overcome them?

¨      What if you unmask your emotions and actually deal with them?

¨      What if you tell your secrets and they no longer suffocate you in the hidden places of your heart?


Step out of your boat, as Peter did, and discover who you are and what you can do as a child of an amazing God. It’s a calculated risk, and it’s worth it.


Dear Father, I am climbing out of the boat today just like Peter. I hear Your truth instead of the voice of doubt and fear. I trust that You know me as my Creator. Help me to take a baby step today toward You and my destiny. Thank You for reaching out and helping me walk on unfamiliar and exciting waters. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.


Related Resources:

Do You Know Him?


The Mom I Want to Be: Rising Above Your Past to Give Your Kids a Great Future by T. Suzanne Eller


Visit Suzie’s blog.


Application Steps: 

Write down this word in five places where you can see it throughout the day: ANTICIPATE


(Begin to anticipate what God can do in your life.)



It is important to differentiate between a calculated risk and risky behavior. Risky behavior—the bad kind—is anything that goes against Scripture or that has the potential to physically or emotionally harm you or your loved ones.


A calculated risk:


o       Is planned and has a specific goal in mind. (I want to be a speaker, so I will go to a training conference, take a course, connect with others with the same passion.)


o       May cost you something (thus the word “risk”), but you’ve weighed the cost vs. the benefits and the possible advantages are worth it.


o       Is trying new things, exploring talents that lie dormant, and reaching out to new friends.


o       Is believing that you can be accepted and valued for who you are.


Power Verses:

Ephesians 1:19-20 “I also pray that you will understand the incredible greatness of God’s power for us who believe in Him. This is the same mighty power that raised Christ from the dead and seated Him in the place of honor at God’s right hand in the heavenly realms.” (NLT)



© 2009 By T. Suzanne Eller. All Rights Reserved.


Proverbs 31 Ministries

616-G, Matthews-Mint Hill Road

Matthews, NC 28105

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