There is something so beautifully refreshing about the ocean. I know there are psychological terms to refer to the peace that seems to wash over me watching the waves go in and out, but I know it is something more. My dear Lynn and I always say that the beach is where God is and laughingly say we always want to be where He is! Bring on the flip-flops! In truth, the vast expanse of water put into motion by the same creator who awakens me every morning is my own personal breathtaking reminder. A God that big delights in even the tiny bits that make up me. Amazing.
We always find ourselves at the beach before big decisions. I am sure that is no accident. I am better ready to face new challenges with a fresh-from-the-beach mind. On our way there this Spring Break, we took a detour to check out houses in the town where we will soon move after living in the same beautiful Virginia town for 18 years. My husband has taken a job out of state and has been there since January, coming home on weekends. It hasn’t been easy. Some medical issues and the general busy schedule of life with three kids at three different schools, a house on the market and missing him like crazy should have really shaken us. I say “should have” because honestly, all of that normally would. But we have had a peace about this job, this move, this whole thing from the beginning. And that peace is a gift, especially when you are leaving everything and everyone you hold dear in the place you’ve called home for your entire married life together.
I didn’t always have peace. When you have struggled with anxiety, doubt, fear, the idea of peace can seem foreign. Yet every time a new worry reared its ugly head, I was reminded that I am in the best of hands. Any plan I might have would not compare to the perfect path He has for me. With each step in this process, from interview to home staging, it became easier and easier to just let go and trust. It really is freeing.
A song we sang in church Sunday has haunted me since. I’ll attach the link but here are some of the lyrics:
Spirit lead me where my trust is without borders
Let me walk upon the waters
Wherever You would call me
Take me deeper than my feet could ever wander
And my faith will be made stronger
In the presence of my Savior
In the Bible, Peter began to sink the moment his eyes were off Jesus. But as soon as his focus was solely on the only one who could keep his life afloat, Peter learned to trust. I can’t be the only one who sometimes feels the waves of life lapping up at me, rising to the point of near-panic. Those are the very times God has chosen to show us just how very loved we are and if we will simply trust, how very willing He is to bear our burdens and save us the anguish of worry. And then something beautiful happens. Faith blooms.
Tonight during his prayer, my baby boy thanked God for his faith. At the time it seemed so awkward to hear and at the same time, so simply perfect. If, as the song says, I will allow myself to be brought to a place where my trust is without borders and rules, with eyes on Him, I will be left standing and not sinking. I know that because every time I lift my eyes and finally give over the very thing that has been gnawing at me, He replaces my worry with peace and shows me why His hands were where it needed to be all along. As a kid, I didn’t really get the whole concept of when we are weak, He is strong. Now I get it. He is and was always strong. It’s just that in our weakness, we can finally see His strength, His arm outstretched, ready to bring us to higher ground with Him. Faith is born.
Fast-forward to the week later. We have a contract on our house, movers lined up and tonight we made an offer on a home that we feel suits us to a tee. Now we wait. And waiting is okay. I’m still standing on the water, well over my head and the view is beautiful. No flip-flops needed.