Wednesday, August 13, 2014

An Oasis

We spent the day at the lake a few days ago. It was a yearly family picnic; all the other families were gone by 3pm, but we lingered. The kids enjoyed the water, some played games, some of us just relaxed and read by the water.


It was one of those days that I call “comfort for the soul.”

There is something about being by the water that comforts me. It’s a time of reflection, restoration, rejuvenation, and relaxation. I’m not sure if this feeling goes back to my childhood (I grew up by the lake) or if it’s something that’s found me in later years, but I just love being by the water.

The smell of the lake, the gentle lapping of the waves on the shore, the permission to just sit and watch the water, read or people-watch. Or the roar of the ocean, the waves crashing to the shore,
and the awareness of the majesty of God.
It’s an oasis in the middle of a busy life.
"It's hard for me to put into words why I like the beach so much.  Everything about it is renewing for me, almost like therapy."
Amy Dykens
"Ever since I was a child I've felt connected to water: lakes, rivers, streams - - I love to jump in and swim around.  But it's the ocean where I go for rejuvenation, revelation, and solace."
Susan Rockefeller
"The sea hath no king but God alone."
Dante Gabriel Rossetti

I love moments like these, that cause me to stop and ponder life, enjoy family and wonder why I don’t do this more often.
But I do go to the water as often as I can. 
Our local beach on Lake Champlain and the beaches of Wells, Maine. 
My soul seeks these places during the summer months. 
I find communication with the Lord very easy on these beaches. 
It was where I found much needed solace a few months after my husband died. 
The ocean especially, makes me think of the omnipotence and majesty of our mighty God. 
It makes me feel small in a very good way and increases my faith in the God of the universe. 
The God who causes the ebb and flow of the daily tide. 
He is so majestic and yet the Bible says the hairs of my head are numbered;
so He is also so personal. 
I find it so easy to believe that everything is right with the world or at least that everything can be right with the world when I'm by the water, even when it's not.
Because I'm awed once again by the One who holds everything in His hands.

“And they heard the voice of the Lord God walking in the garden in the cool of the day;"
Genesis 3:8
(I’ll give my disclaimer right now;
I know I am taking this Scripture totally out of context.)

Whenever I read this verse, however, it does something to my soul. I think of the Lord God walking in the garden of my heart and that always makes me think of being in a place of stillness and reflection where I can hear God.
And then that makes me think again of being by the water, a place of stillness for me, a place of communication -
“the cool of the day.”

We all need to take that time out of our busy, crazy lives. Whether you go to the lake, the ocean, the river, a stream, or even the mountains or a desert, wherever you can find the oasis - do it!

Take the time to reflect, to relax, to contemplate and to communicate with the Lord.

Let Him walk in the garden of your heart in the cool of the day.

“Blessed is the man that walks not in the counsel of the ungodly, nor stands in the way of sinners,
nor sits in the seat of the scornful.
But his delight is in the law of the Lord; and in his law does he meditate day and night.
And he shall be like a tree planted by the rivers of water, that brings forth his fruit in his season; his leaf also shall not wither; and whatsoever he does shall prosper.”
Psalm 1:1-3 (emphasis mine)

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