This summer I have spent quite a few mornings, and some evenings, enjoying my friends pool - some of the time was focused on water aerobics and some was just fun time spent with family and friends. However, almost every time I have been there, we have ended up doing a current in the pool. The pool is more of a kidney shape, so the first time we did it, I was not sure it was going to work, but it did. Throughout these times in the pool, there have been anywhere from 2-10 people at a time swimming to form the current, but there are some things I have observed from this exercise.
-No matter how many people are in the pool, after one time around, the water is already going in the same direction. The more people we have, obviously the stronger the current.
-Not everyone swims at the same speed, but as long as we are all moving, the current continues to get stronger.
-If one person decides to sit on the ledge on one edge of the pool, the current does not move as fast and those that are swimming are met with some resistance when swimming past the ledge.
The last couple of times I swam in the current, God began to give me a very clear vision of what, we as Christians, have been called to do to move His Kingdom forward here on earth.
To create a current in life, when doing it alone, not much is going to happen - you will make some headway, but it will get tiring, it will get lonely, and momentum will be very difficult to keep up. As the Bible says "Though one may be overpowered, two can defend themselves. A cord of three strands is not quickly broken." Ecclesiastes 4:12. And the couple of times we have had 10 people swimming in the same direction - WOW - there were times I didn't even kick or swim, but simply enjoyed the ride!!
The speed of each person really doesn't matter as long as we were all headed in the same direction, in the pool, there are times I pass people and there are times I am passed - but when we all "swim" with the same ending in mind - to bring the lost, broken and forgotten to Christ, then we lose the competitive spirit and we usher in the spirit of cooperation and conviction! "As iron sharpens iron, so one person sharpens another." Proverbs 27:17
There have been times that someone chooses not to participate in the "current" and sits on the ledge of the pool, slowing down the current in that spot or creating resistance in the water when we swim by - and this brought to mind those people we pass everyday that we choose to judge, to say things we know we shouldn't, to condemn, to ridicule, to even think, life would be easier without them in it, but isn't that who Jesus came to save? Before we made a decision to follow Christ, each of us were "that person". We all at some point in our lives, created a resistance or maybe many, but by His grace and the bold obedience of those that were praying for us and leading us to Christ, we now have the opportunity to help someone off the ledge, show them Jesus and welcome them to the current! "For the Son of Man came to seek and to save the lost". Luke 19:10
Now at the end of our exercise - on the count of three - we all turn and face the opposite direction and swim against the current. This is obviously the hardest part and as soon as we turn and head into the current, for a couple of seconds it is not that tough, but soon we all stop talking, laughing, smiling, enjoying ourselves, as we push our way against the current - it gets harder and harder, until we all work together, each doing our part, to redirect the resistance. And in those times when you have stepped out in faith, the first couple of steps may not have been that hard, but if you remain moving forward in what He has called you to do, you will experience, hard, uncomfortable, "I want to quit, I want my mommy" kind of resistance. "Consider it pure joy my brothers and sisters, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance." James 1:2-3
As those who have given their lives to Jesus Christ, we have been assured that we will live a life of resistance, that the world will look at us as if we are off our rockers, but we can rest assured that He has promised that it will all be worth it! "for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we DO NOT GIVE UP" (Emphasis mine - Galatians 6:9b)
As I continue to open my heart to what He is asking me to do, my eyes are being opened to those around me that are hurting, lost, broken - and because of what He has done in me - I have the Answer - not matter the question, no matter the resistance, no matter the problem - the Answer is always the same - Jesus Christ!!!
Through the many obstacles we face on a daily basis, the one constant is, His Love and promises for each one of us! Cling tight to Him, seek His face, love Him with every ounce of your being - because He is worth it all!!! As Dory so profoundly said in "Finding Dory" - "Just keep swimming!"