Life comes with many risks. And naturally we seek to minimize these as much as we can by preparing and avoiding pitfalls whenever possible. But no amount of preparation can eliminate all risks, and we will likely still face many challenges regardless of how much we learn beforehand.
Whether it’s a new job, marriage, parenting, or the like, it’s good to embark on new adventures as informed as possible. This is part of how we count the cost and determine if this is a worthwhile endeavor to begin with. And, to be sure, it would be foolish just to show up without any forethought of what will be required of us.
At the same time, there’s a limit to how much we can know or be prepared for the journey ahead. With many of life’s adventures, it’s the journey itself that prepares us. Of course, it’s still wise to study the maps and learn from those who have gone before. But it’s a mistake to assume we can know enough to avoid all the dangers and difficulties along the way.
And perhaps knowing this is the best piece of advice we can take with us. While we should get as many practical tips and tools as we can, knowing hard days are still in our future helps to keep us from getting discouraged and falling into despair. Our struggles are not because we’re blowing it or somehow didn’t prepare enough. They’re simply an expected reality on the journey.
This gives us hope that we’re not alone – that others have also experienced similar hardships. And it allows us to weather the storm without losing our way.
In the end, prepare for the adventures of life as best as you can. It’s foolish to go in ill-equipped. And remember the best preparation doesn’t eliminate risk and hardship; it simply gives you the eyes to see and respond courageously.