Today was another windy day at the beach. The sky was blue as far as you could see with an occasional puffy cloud. White sand stretched in all directions, packed as hard as concrete where it met the water. Waves of water swelled and rolled toward the beach, making it a perfect day for wind and body surfing.
It was also quite warm so the wind was a welcome addition to beach time. As I sat, I watched the waves. They began somewhere far beyond where I could see and undulated toward shore. About twenty feet out, the surface of the wave broke and rolled over itself before flattening out and sliding to the shore.
In order to cool off, I wandered into the water. The first bit was slow going as I struggled against the current and the waves breaking into white foam. Pushing past the point of breaking waves, I made an interesting discovery. I found I could relax into the water and allow the waves to gently undulate and carry me with them. Lifting my legs and floating, I found the rough water to be quite gentle and rather enjoyable.
There was just one tiny obstacle to this pleasurable experience in the deeper water. I had to push past the breaking waves where the water was quite shallow into deeper water where the waves gently lifted me up and just as gently set me down. In essence, I leaned into and trusted the water.
As I considered the ocean, I knew there were those who didn’t venture past the shallow water into the deep because of the waves coming into shore. It took effort to push past the white foaming water breaking in the shallows. Just when I thought I could move beyond them, another wave came in. It was easier to go back to shore than to push against the current and into the deeper water. But once I was past where the waves fell over themselves, the water carried me along the swell as if I was nestled in her arms.
Sometimes in my spiritual life, I don’t want to go deep. The way is hard, much effort is required to get there, obstacles overwhelm me. But when I push in and do the hard things, I find myself in the deep water of God where there is so much life.
Going deep with God requires three sacrifices. First, I must let go of my need for what is comfortable. As in the water, if I want to get to the place where the waves aren’t crashing against me, I have to be willing to get out of my comfort zone.
Secondly, I must push past the obstacles. It might be a sacrifice of time, resources, energy, money — whatever is keeping me out of the deep water. At the beach, it’s the distance and a few strong waves.
Finally, my trust has to be in the Spirit. If I want to experience the greatest joy, I have to let go and relax into something greater than myself. There is a great deal of joy in floating with the waves and trusting them.
5Trust in the Lord with all your heart; do not depend on your own understanding. 6Seek his will in all you do, and he will show you which path to take. 7Don’t be impressed with your own wisdom. Instead, fear the Lord and turn away from evil.Proverbs 3:5-7
Is the Lord inviting you into the deep water of His Spirit? What keeps you on the shore? Is it fear of the obstacles? Is it the what ifs? What if I don’t like it? What if it isn’t what I thought? What if…?
Here’s my invitation to take on the waves and get into the deep. It’s really quite rewarding!