Life is full of experiences that can be compared to sailing calm waters. There are also experiences in life that feel more like raging storms on an open sea, with no hope in sight. When the storms of life batter us so severely and we are about to drown under the waves that relentlessly keep coming at us, it feels as if the sea is hungry to pull another soul under the water into eternity. However, God is always faithful to throw us a lifesaver. He has not abandoned us even though that is sometimes our thought since we cannot always see where He is or why we feel so alone. The storms of life can sometimes create such chaos that we cannot see very clearly at all. We take what we feel must be our last breath when suddenly, something brushes our hand and we grasp onto it with all that we are. We feel that if we let go of that something that has saved us from certain death, we will perish. This is an understandable reaction in the fight against death. If whatever has saved us is a person, however, it is possible that our tenacity to cling to our own life just may overcome them and they will drown because of our struggling. Once the contact is made and we hear the voices yelling at us over the roar of the storm that we are now safe, we must calm down and open our eyes to the truth of the situation.
A “lifesaver” is a tool used to reach someone drowning who has drifted far from safety. It is an important tool but it is also has a temporary purpose. There comes a time when that “tool” has served its purpose and God says it is time to come to Him now. God’s desire is to save us from anything that separates us from Him. To save us from anything that separates us from the abundant life that He offers. Things in our world can be used by Him to keep us afloat when we are about to drown in the rough seas of life. Nevertheless, those things will not ultimately save us. It is like being thrown a lifesaver in the middle of a rough and stormy sea. We cannot be completely safe until we allow ourselves to follow the line back to the one who threw it to us and who can lift us to the safety a bigger boat offers. We must allow God to rescue us fully and not be content to hang on to the object (or person) He used to reach us when we were so far away. We must follow the rope back to the abundant life that can only be found in Christ. We must let go of the lifesaver that has served its purpose and exchange it for the fullness that only God can offer. He offers warmth, a comfort, a safety that cannot be experienced while we cling to the lifesaver still in the waters below. We must take the hand of our Rescuer and allow Him to lift us into the boat. Yes, the storm still rages. Yes, we still feel the rocking and rolling of the waves that continue to batter the ship’s sides. However, this ship is most sea worthy. We will experience a peace beyond understanding. We will know that this Rescuer will never throw us overboard. He will be by our side no matter what life throws at us, whether raging storms or calm waters.
We will find rest because we will know we are finally and truly safe.