In Others’ Words: The Danger of Precautions

Too Many Precautions 2015

I wish I hadn’t always been so cautious in years past.

I was a bit of a “tell me the rules and I’ll follow them” kind of person. Let me put it this way: I was a safety patrol girl in school — the one wearing the neon orange belt and helping other kids cross the street. Do they even have safety patrols in school anymore? I think not — we’ve progressed to metal detectors and security officers.

Precautions are dangerous. 

Don’t you love the contradiction hidden in today’s quote?

If we’re too careful we just might protect ourselves from stepping outside our comfort zone … into the scary open space of a too-big-for-us dream. But when are dreams supposed to be easy to handle?

If we’re cautious, we might hesitate … and miss the you’ve-got-to-be-kidding-me opportunity that changes our lives in ways we never imagined.

  • You say yes to living overseas for nine months, like my daughter Amy did when she was twenty.
  • You retire from the military and start a solo family practice when very few physicians are doing this anymore, like my husband did.
  • You throw away the list you’ve made of the “perfect guy” and discover who God is going to bring into your life — and laugh when you realize “Mr. Right” was no where on your list. And yes, this happened to my daughter Katie Beth. 


The advice to throw caution to the wind? It just might allow you to grab hold of something dangerously grand.


In Your Words: Are you naturally cautious or more of a risk-taker? When have you been willing to risk … and been thankful you did? What was your reward? 

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  1. October 8, 2015, 6:50 am   /  Reply

    Yes, they still have school safety patrols. I see and appreciate them every time I pick up my grandkids after school.
    Somehow as a kid seeing many relatives afraid of taking risks made me decide that you’d never know what was possible unless you tried, and amazingly most things ARE possible with God’s help and a little partnership work and obedience on our part. Usually most things that God inspires ARE possible and are then very much enjoyed and hopefully blessings to others as well besides the fun of all the things we learn along the way.

    • October 8, 2015, 7:25 am   /  Reply

      Thanks for the safety patrol update, Dee. 🙂
      And yes, amazing things are possible with God’s help — and the encouragement of others. I so believe in the power of mentors.

  2. October 8, 2015, 7:07 am   /  Reply

    Life’s dangerous. That’s why we have morphine.

    There are sensible precautions to take, obviously, but those should be ‘process’, and not ‘plan’. Choose what you want to do, and in the process take the precautions needed to arrive alive.

    For example, a motorcycle trip to Alaska – don’t skip it because it’s dangerous, but do wear a helmet and leathers, and try to avoid riding in the rain and high wind. Don’t hit the front brakes on gravel (and don’t ask how I know this last one).

    And never go to a Harley bar on a Honda.

    • October 8, 2015, 7:28 am   /  Reply

      I love your differentiation between the process and the plan.
      And sometimes we have to abandon the plan for the unexpected, don’t you agree?
      And a motorcycle trip to Alaska … would it be fair to ask for photos? 😉
      Thanks for the laugh this morning. Harleys and Hondas don’t mix, for sure and certain.

      • October 8, 2015, 4:10 pm   /  Reply

        Didn’t actually do the trip; it was on the Dream List, but circumstances intervened.

  3. October 8, 2015, 8:23 am   /  Reply

    I love Andrew’s take on precaution. I’m one of those people who live by the mantra it’s better to ask forgiveness than permission. 🙂 And I have learned Andrew’s lesson–if you’re going to ride a bike, wear a helment.

    • October 8, 2015, 11:06 am   /  Reply

      “Better to ask forgiveness than permission.”
      Another great mantra.

      And another motorcycle rider too! 🙂

      • October 8, 2015, 8:12 pm   /  Reply

        Afraid not, Beth–bicycle, not motorcycle. 🙂 But helment are needed there, too.

      • October 8, 2015, 8:13 pm   /  Reply


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