Wednesday, August 29, 2018

White Water

Many years ago, I went to a park called White Water  in Branson, Missouri.  We were a large group with my family and the family of one of my sisters.  
   
At this water park, my sister and I decided to leave the ease of life on the Lazy River for the experience of an unfamiliar ride.  The ride seemed calm and peaceful at the beginning as we lowered ourselves into the waiting inner tubes and began floating down a river of slow moving water.  Then gradually the moving water changed to White Water rapids with a bend in the river ahead.  We couldn't see what was coming next.  All we could hear was loud screaming.   The name of the ride was Whirlpool. 

My sister and I made a promise to each other while the water was calm that we would hold hands and stick together no matter what came our way.  Across the inner tube, I reached for her hand, and we floated side by side--committed to one another to the end.  

That promise lasted until we came to the first whirlpool.  We were sucked into a continues vacuum of spinning water.  It was impossible to get any leverage to break free.  We watched tube after tube of laughing patrons bounce off us into freedom.  No one would help.  We were hopelessly trapped.  It was crazy out-of-control stuff.

I'm not sure who turned on who first, but there was the positioning of a foot on my inner tube and then I was pushed with great force deeper into the spinning water.  That push helped catapult my sister to freedom or so she thought.  There were many more whirlpools to maneuver before the ride would end.    

After that betrayal, I dug deep into my competitive spirit--okay it wasn't that deep--and then did the same thing to a helpless stranger passing by.  I was free.  Now, that person was trapped and a sinister laugh escaped my lips. 

At the next bend in the river, I came upon my sister and without mercy I applied the same killer move.  I left her behind me spinning without any sense of remorse.  Then at the next turn someone pushed off my inner tube and I was sucked into yet another whirlpool.    

This time my sister came upon me and soon we were both stuck again.  We finally arrived at the end of the ride and our husbands couldn't believe how long it took us to break free.  Needless to say, I've never been on that ride again. But the memory of it is alive and well. 

I think what amazes me most about this story is how quickly I was willing to betray and leave behind the one I loved for my own self-preservation.

I think we all have within us a self-preservation mode just like that.  It's cat like reflexes that help us land on our feet even if someone else is under them!  Human nature is...survive at all cost. 

Just like that water park ride, the whirlpool ride of life can feel the same. We can be moving along nicely and BAM, we get sucked into the spinning waters of life.  Issues and concerns take ahold of us and won't let go.  We may feel betrayed, helpless or hopeless, but there is One who sticks closer than…let's say…'a sister.'

His name is Jesus.

"…for he has said, "I will never leave you and I will never abandon you."
Hebrews 13:5 (NET) 

When the White Waters of life try and sweep over you or have you spinning out of control remember--God's word doesn't lie.  He will never leave you and you are not alone. 






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