Kissing Waves

This summer I took part in a women’s Bible study led by friend, author, and teacher Doreen Moore. She’s an amazing woman! Her love for the Lord and obedience to His call of teaching and writing is so inspiring. And she has the gift of deep intelligence which she uses to bring glory to God.

I love that the Bible studies she writes are peppered with historical information, Greek and Hebrew word studies, and quotes from theologians and well known Christians (of modern day and the past). {For more thoughts inspired by another of her studies, click here.}

So, here we are in September and Doreen’s summer study is still on my mind. The school year has begun and the hint of fall is whispering in the breeze and scattered raindrops. And yet, I still find myself mulling over one quote in particular from the section we did on Psalms of Lament. It was a quote by Charles H. Spurgeon (1834-1892), an English pastor known as the “Prince of Preachers” due to his earned degree of respect from many different denominations.
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“I have learned to kiss the wave that throws me against the Rock of Ages.” -Charles Spurgeon

Kissing the Wave

So what does kissing the wave really mean? And what should that look like in my life? That’s what I’ve been pondering these past few months.

I’m sure you would agree that life seems to throw us one wave after another. Lately, I’ve had waves of stress, new responsibilities, and an overloaded schedule. The kids need to get to there on time, laundry yells my name, the payment need to be dropped off, little one wants to snuggle, my adult child needs to talk, it’s past midnight, and dishes are still in the sink.

And this is good. Because it means life. It means I am needed and have the opportunity to show my love and glorify God through my living.

And then, there’s the more serious things in life. I have mine… you name yours. A diagnosis? A lost job? A wayward child, a straying husband, a dying parent?

Waves.

That’s what all of this is. Waves of life. So, how on earth are we supposed to KISS them?

I think it’s obvious that Spurgeon wasn’t telling us to embrace the hard things in life just because they’re hard. He wasn’t preaching a toughen-up and tough-it-out mentality. That, on some level, might be considered stoicism. And Spurgeon wasn’t saying that we should seek painful experience because they draw us closer to God. That would be self-defeating or masochistic.

Instead, Spurgeon was reminding us of an already known Christian truth.

“I have said these things to you, that in me you may have peace. In the world you will have tribulation. But take heart; I have overcome the world.” (John 16:33, ESV)

This world is fallen. And because of that, we will suffer. Life will never be perfect, but we can draw close to the One who is. We can take heart (also translated “be courageous”, “be of good cheer”), because we know the Overcomer!

And this is why we can kiss the wave.

Every wave is an opportunity to be lead to higher ground. The wave itself may not be good, but in it there is goodness and cause to give thanks. Thanks can be given because the wave inspires us to pursue God. And that is good.

“give thanks IN all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.” (1 Thes 5:18, ESV– emphasis mine)

With each wave we face a choice… We can be pushed down, be overwhelmed, and let the tide pull us away from the Rock, or we can see the wave coming and greet it with gratefulness because it reminds us that we need Him. And when we are thrust upon Him, we can reach out and cling to Him.

In my life, kissing the wave is demonstrated by trust– the growing, deepening, not-perfected-yet kind of trust. After all, trust is an expression of faith, and when we trust Him to help us, and let Him be God, the waves are so much more bearable. And the incomparable joy we receive from His close presence while the wave crashes around us makes the deluge seem so much sweeter.

“Tust in the LORD forever, for the LORD GOD is an everlasting rock.” (Isa 26:4, ESV)

“…from the end of the earth I call to you when my heart is faint. Lead me to the rock that is higher than I.”
(Psa 61:2, ESV)

“…fear not, for I am with you; be not dismayed, for I am your God; I will strengthen you, I will help you, I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.” (Isa 41:10, ESV)

What waves are you facing? How are they bringing you closer to God? And what are you learning?

Click to Tweet:Every wave of life is an opportunity to cling to Him. #KissTheWave

Ali

 

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