"When thou passest through the waters, I will be with thee..."


Taking a journey of faith, dreaming, and swimming. These are a few of my favorite things. In a way, they are woven throughout my life, even from the time I was very young. I have always been afraid of deep water, especially with waves and large sea creatures. And yet, precisely because it was fearsome to me, I found it a suitable circumstance to lean upon the everlasting arms.

When I saw Haystack Rock from the beach in Pacific City, I was inspired to swim out to it. This was like a breath of fresh air from my youth, when I would be inspired to climb mountains, cross continents and oceans, and visit distant countries. Of course my wife and children protested, but I would not be distracted. I rented a wet suit and fins, dove into the waves, and started swimming. It was much further than I had anticipated, especially since I was coming at it from an angle. I lay on my back and found rest in trusting God to preserve me, even despite my fear of the unknown. I kept kicking, and it seemed like a long time. I saw whales. Large black mounds rolling out from the surf, and then the puff from the blow-hole. Large stalks of seaweed, with a seal swimming among them. Thousands of seagulls. The rock is very large when you get up close to it. I climbed up to a ledge, and surveyed the beach. After a long while, I dove back into the swells, and made my way back.

Somehow I found this little adventure to be very significant. I would dream of it later, with the great and fearsome depths beneath me, and the loving buoyancy of divine providence lifting me up.


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