I never get over the beach. We drove down on Friday, my dad, my nephew, Austin, and me, and there was this air of having run away from home on some secret holiday. We had escaped the day-to-day routine, left the laundry, the homework, and the daily rooms life is spent in, and headed for the shore, for openness, for where water kisses earth. My instruction: “Rest in Me. Times like this are just as important as you standing in prayer for a town or a business. Even the small done well, ripples throughout years and lives.”
My dad, who turned 80 this year, grew up fishing in the inlet marsh and still loves it there, but having faced health difficulties has not been able to travel without the aid of pain medication and a wheel chair. He did well, his spirit thrilled to life at the thought of just being there. He would enjoy it in his way, telling us stories of flounder and crabs and his friend, Jimmy. He and Austin lay awake late into the night and I could hear Dad telling Austin the stories. Grandfather and grandson, both being nurtured and blessed. At 80, Dad still has a voice and longs to use it. At 15, Austin is finding his.
Waking to the sunrise through the window, there they were ~ waves, as faithful as the day they were created, rolling, tumbling and dancing onto the sand. My Father was waiting for me. With bible, journal, and fresh brew in my cup, I sat with Him and enjoyed the quiet morning, my ear to His waves, my head against His heart. I read where He had created the beach on the third day.
“And God said, Let the waters under the heavens be collected into one place [of standing] and let the dry land appear. And it was so. God called the dry land Earth and the accumulated waters He called Seas. And God saw that this was good (fitting, admirable) and He approved it.” ~Genesis 1:9-10 AMP
“Walk in peace as if you are walking on a beach.”
I am still and imagine the waves speaking. “We are faithfully here for you. Watch us dance! See our petticoat frills of lace?” as their skirts fall forward and suddenly rush towards the sand. I brewed Dad a glass of sun tea on the balcony, one Twinings bag in a glass, a red tag fluttering in the breeze.
Light from that sun that brews tea also pierces, kisses each wave as it rises, stretching up to Him before falling and bowing in a tumble of eyelet lace foam. Over and over, reminding me of the elders in Heaven who, raising their crowns, bow again and again in worship of God.
Three generations in a hotel suite have grown up coming to these beaches. Again I watched as God knitted our experiences together and brought new life right where we each had need and could receive it. I love being the one in the middle, looking back at Dad and forward at Austin, and prayerfully minding the gap.
A meeting of more family who live nearby allowed time for the catch of the day to be savored by the water’s edge, and allowed time for brothers to be together. We sat by Dad’s inlet marsh and ate loaves and fishes and were filled, satisfied. I am sure it must have compared to what was served on that Galilean hillside when there were 12 baskets of leftovers!
On Sunday, we entertained two pigeons who arrived uninvited on our balcony and proceeded to enter the suite, despite the sticker that said “Don’t feed the seagulls.” They feasted on portions of blueberry muffin provided by Austin.
And we feasted our eyes on scenes of sea oats, shells, and sand, tides flowing in and out.
We walked, carefully chose shells to save, and savored the faithfulness of which the waves speak.
Now back at home, the earth turns into new days, sunlight pours into windows, and dances on leaves falling colors outside, and my cup of tea warms my throat as I stand in a moment of His presence. I remember these days at the shore and store them away in that pocket of my heart that holds treasure. I have returned to daily prayers with Mom for the family and the time with bowed hearts is essential.
Just three days away from Thanksgiving Day, I am amazed how the Father always lives out His covenant with us, His faithful love poured and running down, over and over like waves over sand, washed, shining, and constant. Thank you, Father, for the sea and the sand and for meeting us where we are. Thank you for the display of Your faithfulness in the waves, for family and time. Thank you for life abundant. May we never stop counting the ways you love us. May we learn to rest in that. I love you, Jesus.
(c) Robin Lawrimore, Nov. 2011