Friday, December 2, 2011

the ocean

A few weeks ago, we took the hour-long trek to the ocean. I have been to the Atlantic Ocean a few times, but never the Pacific. I was really excited to see it--to experience the salty smell and sights and to walk in the sand searching for shells and such treasures that only the ocean shore can offer. Not to swim, of course. Much too cold. And much too frightening for me. Maybe its the jellyfish and hidden creatures, or more likely the currents and waves, but I looked forward to standing on the brink and observing.

You see, I absolutely love being near water.

There is something so calming and refreshing about water. Its rhythmic movement, the soothing sound of waves lapping (or even crashing) on shore, the way it reflects the light and sparkles--it just brings a steadying, a peace to my over-stimulated mind and heart. Just to sit by it and behold it and soak it all in...bliss.

Being used to Lake Erie and my few encounters with the Atlantic, I was used to fairly mind waves when it came to water. I had the assumption that the Pacific was the "wilder" one of the oceans and expected it to be pretty intimidating to see.

It was. 

It was very hazy the day we went to the ocean, so we could only see so far in the distance when we first arrived. It only added to the intensity of the waves--wow, those waves...the power and strength behind those waves was breathtaking.

It made me think of God.

I mean, He made the ocean. Doesn't the creation say something about its Creator? The beauty, power, magnificence of it really is something to behold.

Who has ascended to heaven and come down? Who has gathered the wind in his fists? Who has wrapped up the waters in a garment? Who has established all the ends of the earth? What is his name, and what is his son's name? Surely you know! (Proverbs 30:4, ESV)
What a blessing to know, to know the God who gathers fearsome wind in His just his fist and wraps up the vast ocean (the ocean!!) in a simple garment, like throwing a jacket on a child. One translation says "who wraps up the oceans in his cloak." It is mind-blowing to think of how big God really is.

It is also mind-blowing, incomprehensible, to know that this God seeks after us--wants to be known.

He is the Big God, and yet He is the Intimate God. When walking on an ocean shore, finding shells and driftwood and rocks and animals, the detail and intricacy that you see in His creation is astounding and comforting at the same time; that if He took the time to make those details, those details in nature that may never even be seen with human eyes, then perhaps He can handle the details of my crazy, messy life. A life where sometimes we can be suddenly swept up and overwhelmed and feel like we're close to drowning but doesn't He have the waters in his garment?

Can He not handle it?

Can He not calm the sea with a word, reach out His hand and pull you up?

Just as you hold a beautiful, crafted, thought-out creation of a sea shell in your hand, just as you can touch and enjoy and experience it--such is God. Just as you are overwhelmed and reverent and humbled and awed when you stand near the crashing waves--such is God.

Big and intimate. Ever near and yet over all.

Remember that haze, keeping us from seeing very far? Right before we left, it cleared up, and sunlight shown through the clouds, illuminating the water all silver at the horizon. The waves had gotten calmer, and just glittered in the sun. The photo just doesn't do it justice.

It doesn't help that my lens was dirty! Oops

He calms the storm, So that its waves are still. (Psalm 107:29)

 You rule the raging of the sea; When its waves rise, You still them. (Psalm 89:9)

He alone spreads out the heavens, And treads on the waves of the sea (Job 9:8)
When it's hard to see God, when life seems hazy, wait on Him. Draw near in faith. He will give light. He will give Himself.

He is near.


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Michelle said... Best Blogger Tips

Beautiful words and wonderful pics!

Anonymous said... Best Blogger Tips

Just wonderful and also very...... encouraging,comforting admonitions. Mamamia

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