Turbulent times

Tonight I spent a great evening with my son and close, dear friends enjoying boiled peanuts, a bucket of chicken, a cooler of ice cold cokes and Pepsi’s and laughter and quiet talks as the sun set on a turbulent choppy ocean.

It was a great night in tough times.

For many of us we are moving forward and feeling as if the turbulent times we are in are pulling us back 10 steps for every five we take.
I saw this in real life today…..

My son and Davy Crockett struggled with the surf, attempting to catch a ride on a frothy white capped wave but the current was so strong it would pull them sideways and away from where they wanted to place themselves to be able to ride the wave in.
It was a topic of the adult conversation. No storms were in the horizon or even forecasted but tonight the wind was blowing up sand and a salty mist all around us. The surf was as turbulent as a major storm would make it……but no storm. Beautiful skies, sunny day, you would expect a smooth glassy surface.

Our friends and outdoor companions are lovers of nature.

When an outdoorsman like Davy Crockett comes in to sit and enjoy adult conversation and boiled peanuts, you know the waters are tough and currents are strong. His beautiful wife, I love that woman, says if he is breathing he is in the water or outside somewhere, no need for a beach chair even. Especially when the challenger has plopped his tired hiney in it. Davy’s position changes with the seasons. It will be dove hunting, deer hunting all dependent on what season is pulling him out to enjoy nature but this man used to these conditions was tired. He came in…. the seas were rough.

Davy Crockett made a statement of how we had just been out there a couple of days before and it was a calm sea with small soft waves. How the current and conditions are so unpredictable. No reason that we could see……no storm clouds but a tough current and waves that would pound you into shore with no mercy.
My son the “challenger” went out several times convinced he could conquer the tide. It was an almost impossible task and the strong current would swiftly pull him sideways down the beach closer and closer to the pier which is off limits to surfers and swimmer because of hazards surrounding it.

He would walk back, the long walk from where the current took him to where we were sitting after being pulled down the beach in a matter of minutes.
He fought until he was too weary to fight anymore and sat with us on the beach and we all just watched God’s work in progress.
As we sat there I watched a fisherman on the shore throwing his line out into the choppy waters and I asked how he could fish when the current was pulling the guys so strongly down the beach.
My son the challenger stated softly and with that look that only your precious teen can give you…because the line is weighted mom….it rests on the bottom.
Got me thinking a little bit.
I’m tired……………..
This current is tough! These turbulent times can make you weary.
The waves are high and the water of life fills my lungs and mouth to where sometimes it feels like you can’t breathe.
But sitting and watching the surf, my son made the comment that makes sense and hit home.
I am choosing to stay on the surface of these turbulent waters….fighting…….gasping for breath.
I am determined to win against it. I know I have got to keep control, keep pushing out against the waves in order to safely ride in.
I am struggling and fighting the currents. Why? Because I am afraid to let the current that is pulling at my legs take me under….what if I don’t pop up…..what if I die….so I continue to fight. The one major rule for locals is on knowing how to fight a rip current. This is a current that kills many experienced surfers and swimmers because it sucks at your legs and begins pulling you under. When you are caught in a rip current you have to be trained to know to allow it to take you under. If you fight you will most likely lose that fight and you could die. If you just succumb to the pull on your body it will pop you up where the rip current ends, the waters are calm and you can eventually get back to shore.
I have scuba dove before and the surface of the water can be turbulent loud, scary but beneath the water at the bottom…..quiet…….slowly swaying reeds and growth…….peaceful…….restful and weightless with no need to struggle.
The fisherman…..he would just throw his line out and I would see it was staying in those crazy, wild waves. Not being pulled down to the hazardous pier. All because of the pull of the weight.

I give my turbulent time to God every day, throughout the day but then I say……I’ll just ride the surf up here with you. You know, help You keep an eye on things…….don’t want to miss a good wave…don’t want to be pounded into the shore. You and me God, we got it covered. The the weary battle will start every day again.

But the current is taking me towards danger, maybe God isn’t seeing the danger around the pier. I paddle hard. I get mouthfuls of water. All the time, I feel the tugs on my legs. I resist, I fight, I fear begin taken under.

That is my problem…..if I gave into the pull….I could be brought to a safer place….I could rest on the bottom for a time. Fighting the current…….well, it could take me.

I haven’t given it to God. I have “partnered” with God. Decided He needed my help in this choppy surf.
All the time He has wanted me to rest. Let Him take over and bring me to a safer place. The gentle tugs at my legs, they weren’t trying to take me to a place of death…….they were rescue.
I need to be weighted…….rest on the bottom. Peace beneath the stormy surface. I need my Anchor.
Matthew 11:28 says it simply.

Come unto Me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.

He is our anchor…..our weight. He didn’t say in this verse come unto Me and we are going to get through this together. Didn’t say paddle strong……..work hard…..fight for your life.

No, he says come unto me all ye that labour and are heavy laden and I will give you rest.

If I stop long enough to rest…………..then maybe I can get out of His way.
If I would give in to His pull……then maybe he could take me to safety.

God, thank you for todays turbulent seas to remind me of how I am constantly feeling the need to ride the waves. Wanting to be strong and conquer the turbulent times. Watching and making sure the waves don’t take me out. All the time you just wanted me to rest in you.

I didn’t listen to Him agin…….. I was too busy talking.

I love you Lord, I’m tired…..forgive me for doubting your control of the waves…..I’m ready to rest.



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