Smiling with my honey as we walk hand-in-hand along the sandy shoreline ears tuned to the roar of the ocean. Listening to the squealing sea gulls cry out begging for the fresh sandwiches from our picnic lunch. Sitting on our beach towels the sketch pad and pencils are produced and we draw the scene before us. With the expertise of an artist he draws alternating with my seagulls in the distant sky. Gratifying feelings from artwork created together we timidly leave our space on the beach. Such a change from the solid turf of Iowa or Nebraska. Washing over our feet and ankles the waves feel delightful and call me deeper to playfully dance in the waves of the sea. Waiting with a childlike sense of adventure I mentally prepare to jump and dive full on when the biggest white frothy wave finally arrives from the distant horizon. Enhancing the sense of anticipation Is the unpredictability of the waves sometimes gently pushing me forward sometimes somersaulting my body into a surprise that I hadn’t planned! Overcome with gratefulness when realizing I survived a big one and content to find my orange beach towel with the palm trees and sunset print. Here I’ll rest quietly on the warm, rolling sand until my heart beats less rapidly and the ocean extends her invitation into the waves again.

Psalms 93:3-4 remind us of the strength of God.

The seas have lifted up, O Lord, the seas have lifted up their voice; The seas have lifted up their pounding waves. Mightier than the thunder of great waters Mightier than the breakers of the sea The Lord on high is mighty.

It’s amazing to see the strength of God in the oceans and mighty rivers. Yet even those of us who are landlocked can know the strength of God in quiet and holy moments. When we are alone and scared, praying to the Creator who formed the great bodies of water and inspired beautiful fountains, can help us imagine the Living Water that flows through each of us.

This past week my husband and I celebrated our 45th wedding anniversary. During this time span we have called out to God with incredible gratefulness for the gifts in our lives. We have also cried out for help in times of trouble. We do our best to fulfill the wedding vows we spoke to one another in the year 1975. I’m hoping to one day come across the wedding vows that we’d written for the ceremony but am sure the gist was the same as the traditional ones.

For better, for worse, for richer, for poorer, in sickness and in health, To love and to cherish, ‘til death do us part.

This is not the year we will travel to a far-off land, but we have traveled the distance in caring for and loving one another. As in any relationship, recognizing that the living water flows within each precious child of God is vital to how we see another and choose to get along. Whatever life brings, may we see the wonder of the moment, accept what is, and dive into it, giving thanks the God who created us for a purpose to fulfill and love that will sustain us. May the strength and power of our Creator be with you.

In Christ,