In a move that rather took students by surprise the authorities at Pennsylvania State University decreed that the 98-year old Outing Club, which organised outdoor activities for students, was to be disbanded on health and safety grounds. The club offered students the opportunity to go hiking, running and backpacking, all of which were now considered too dangerous. In response and with some irony, the officers of the Outing Club reassured their members that ‘the Outing Club was not going anywhere.’ Exactly.
Just as well then that the health and safety officers were not on hand when Jesus’ disciples were rowing across a lake late one night, and Jesus appeared out of nowhere and called Peter to get out of the boat and walk to him across the water. Without a risk assessment in sight, let alone a hi vis jacket or a signed consent form to say that Peter could swim two widths of a pool, Jesus encouraged him to take the most reckless action clearly putting his life at risk.
But it turned out that that was the point. Following Jesus is not supposed to be risk free, and He will always be pushing us out of our comfort zones. But when we entrust ourselves into his care we will ultimately always be safe.