Courage in the Waters
Psa 31:24 Be of good courage and he shall strengthen your heart, all ye that hope in the LORD.
Courage is the power to let go of the familiar. ~Raymond Lindquist
Courage is being scared to death... and saddling up anyway. ~John Wayne
Courage is a perfect sensibility of the measure of danger, and a mental willingness to endure it.
- William T. Sherman
Sometimes, there are the most precious moments in my life. Especially those moments when God allows me to look at life through His eyes.
I live in Florida and my two granddaughters from Georgia are spending a couple of weeks with me and my husband, in our condo. There is a community pool where we live and my two granddaughters wanted to get a tan before heading back to Georgia in a couple of days.
When we arrived at the pool, the water was incredibly warm. There was only one other family taking advantage of the pool on a sweltering July afternoon. The father was in the shallow end of the pool with his three year old daughter and he was gently attempting to convince her that she had nothing to fear as she clung desparately to her raft. She was not so easily persuaded and was dogmatic about remaining in her safety floatation device.
The three year old was impressed when my oldest granddaughter, who is fifteen, dived into the deep end of the pool. Then the three year old watched with awe and veneration as my youngest granddaughter, who is thirteen, began to splash about and do some water tricks. The three year old did not take her eyes off of my granddaughters as they continued to impress her with their talent for aquatic fun. The only time the three year old looked away was when her own father began to impress her with his underwater swimming.
Suddenly, there was a huge hole in the raft that was keeping the three year old afloat. The child began to cry out and thrash about as her raft quickly became useless to her. Her father, who had never left her, had to coax her into allowing him to remove her from the now sinking raft.
"Put me there!" the child exclaimed to her father, pointing to the sides of the pool where one could sit and not get wet. The father was reluctant but put the child on the poolside. He stayed with her and tried to gently coax her into allowing him to hold her while in the water. She was not game at all and continued to shake her head 'no'. The father continued to try and coax his daughter and she continued to watch my granddaughters and her resolve to stay out of the water, weakened. The child finally allowed her Dad to bring her back into the pool and walk her about in the shallow end. Her fears were obvious and her voice became anxious but she remained in his arms and her need to be like everybody else in the pool, gave her the strength she needed to allow her father to hold her in the water. Eventually, she left her father's arms and sat on the steps of the pool. The water came near to her knees when she stood on the first step of the pool. Her father gently coaxed her to step down onto the next step where the water was nearer her chest. And the young child just got braver and braver as she allowed herself a moment to enjoy the water.
My two granddaughters continued their water acrobats and the child's father continued to impress his daughter with his underwater swimming abilities. I sat on the side of the pool and watched my granddaughters and watched the father and the Lord spoke to me and said, "Look at your granddaughters! They are fearless in the water and they are having fun! And look at the father of the child. He is doing his best to stay cool in the hot sun by dipping into the water." I looked around and I could see what He was telling me. There was such an impressive array of water lovers having fun. "But," the Lord said, "Look at the three year old. Look how she has overcome such fear in such a little time. And look at how she now plays in the water though her fears are still with her. She is the most impressive of all that are in the water!"
And I could see what God was showing me. My granddaughters were impressive with their swimming abilities and the father was impressive with his swimming abilities, but they did all they did without any fear. The three year old would not leave the steps, but what she did, she did in spite of her fears. And my eyes began to tear up as I understood the things that impressed God. Not our talents or our abilities, but the obstacles we overcome to show off our talents and our abilities. Our trust in Him in spite of our fears, is what impresses God.