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Tuesday, 15 July 2014


Life is a challenge. Whatever your circumstances, there are always problems popping up and it’s easy to give way to anxiety and sink into pity or even despair. Problems can paralyze, but God has not given us a spirit of timidity but a spirit of sound mind and of courage.

A few years ago we were in Australia at the Great Barrier Reef. Twenty-five miles offshore, out of sight of land, we were going to snorkel.

I’m not a good swimmer. I’m anxious when out of my depth and more than an arm’s length from the side of a pool. But I desperately wanted to enjoy one of God’s most extravagant creations, so during the twenty-five mile boat trip out to the reef, I was quiet, sitting and praying that the Lord would not just help me do it, but enable me to enjoy it.

What freedom! I absolutely loved it. The beauty of the coral below the water; the variety of gloriously coloured marine life and the ever changing terrain below water has to be experienced. Truly a wonder of the world. 

As a hurricane was on the way the waves were increasingly choppy, so when I lifted my face to the surface of the water, I got splashed and bobbed around. But then, lying my face flat again against the surface of the water, I became part of a peaceful and restful underwater wonderland. 

The water is splashing me in the face these days. A few things are causing turbulence. But when I remember that experience, I am encouraged to metaphorically put my face to the surface and allow the peace of God to draw me in. 

When I pull back out again, though the water may still be splashing me in the face, my spirit is calm and I can embrace life with courage, trusting in God’s faithfulness and love. 

I pray that whatever challenges you are facing, God will make you brave, too.

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