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On Waves, Tides, and Other Living Water

Isn't life an interesting thing? It comes in waves––or maybe I want to say in sets––of five, six, or even seven. (Most surfers will tell you seven is the magic number.) I'm no surfer, but like all of us, I am riding the crests and swells of life as best I can. Sometimes I catch the wave just right, and other times it catches me and drags me along the bottom for a bit. 

Occasionally I come up gasping for breath, with a nose (or lung) full of water, salt in my eyes, and scratchy sand in places I never imagined, but I always do come up. And the most important part of that equation (on land or sea) has always been trust: letting the waves of life or ocean take me, reminding myself that even when they beat me up more than I'd like; if I can just relax, keep the faith, and hang on to my patience; this turmoil, too, shall pass.

Today is one of those days for me. The most recent set of waves in my life haven'tlooked all that treacherous, but the churning currents beneath the surface have been pretty rough (riptides, I guess), and I've been buffeted about and drug around a bit more than has felt comfortable. This morning, though, the tides have turned. All at once and with little warning my ocean is looking smooth as glass, and I can see the horizon clearly. Even the lighthouse shines more brightly in the distance, as I plant my feet on solid ground and know that a lull has come once again––a much-needed time to breathe deeply and slowly––a time to fill my lungs and renew my energy and resolve.

I love these peaceful lulls, but they couldn't exist without the large and small sets of waves that surround them, the make-or-breakers that swell and rise and crash and recede, again and again and again and again, rendering our senses alive and alert and ready to engage with something, Someone, greater than ourselves. (Lighthouses are always, for me, a reminder of Him.)

One thing is certain. No matter how frequently or infrequently the sets roll in, the moment I begin to think I see and understand the pattern, it will change. Perhaps this is at the very root of my reason for loving the ocean as I do, because it is in every way imaginable a metaphor for life, a soothing reminder that while I am not in charge, the timeless and inviolate rhythm is set in motion by the One who is, He who calms the sea and stills the tempest inside me.


guest post by Sue Anderson of Sue's News, Views n' Muse

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