I am always ready to head home after a trip or vacation. There is something comforting about returning ‘to normal’. The ritual of turning the key to open the front door, that spontaneous sigh that escapes my lips; followed by, “It’s good to be home.”
No more living out of a suitcase, toting bags from place to place or must-see itineraries. No more must-have snapshots; no more time zone confusion to wreak havoc on my usual sleep patterns. I know I am home when the bags are unpacked, stored away and I don’t have to call the front desk for help operating the TV remote.
It’s nice to go to restaurants on occasion, but every day is too much. Navigating new places is tiring; not to mention time spent in an airport waiting for connecting flights, baggage and seemingly never ending checkpoint lines. I think we can agree that travel disrupts our normal routine; it takes us out of our comfort zone. We must communicate with strangers, read maps, and ask for directions.
Travel moves us outside our comfort zone. We are often required to show tolerance, patience and acceptance, not only for unplanned circumstances, but with people invading our space as we stand in line or sit on a plane.
I find travel stretches my comfort zone. I am faced with experiences and opportunities that require me to peel back layers of fear, anxieties and emotional securities. Travel makes me join the rest of the human race and relinquishes my insecurities and need to protect sameness and comfort.
Jesus always traveled outside His comfort zone. Thankfully, He wasn’t held hostage to comfort; Jesus didn’t mind having His normal routine disrupted; He didn’t mind if people invaded His space. When Jesus traveled from town to town, His comfort zone was expanded to embrace everyone he encountered. He showed tolerance, acceptance and patience.
It’s OK to turn the key that opens the door to comfort. But, we also need to disrupt our ‘normal’ to expand our comfort zone. It’s hard to grow if you are always stuck at home. Be like Peter; he stepped outside the comfort of a boat in the middle of a storm. And guess what? He walked on water. Let God call you out of your comfort zone.