The afternoon sun shone warm with a slight breeze in the air.  We decided the weather was perfect for a trip to the beach.  Gathering up our beach stuff and wearing beach attire we settled into the car for the 30 minute drive to the beach.  I’m not sure why Brett always drives as if we may arrive late to any where we go, but rather than a relaxing drive to the beach, Brett weaved in and out of traffic accelerating and hitting the brakes just inches off of the bumpers of various cars in front of us.  When the car in front of us turned and we had a whole cars length between us and the next car I gently reminded Brett that we weren’t in a hurry and wouldn’t arrive late to the beach if he kept a cars length between us and the car in front of us.

It crossed my mind that as we go through life we like to see how close we can come to sin without hitting its bumper and creating an accident and getting whiplash.  We speed up and hit the brakes so we don’t get too close, but then speed up again only to hit the brakes before hitting the bumper of the sin we are flirting with.  It’s hard to be peaceful and calm when we ride so close to sin.  It is only when we back off and stay a safe distance from sin that we have the peace of God in our lives.

When we arrived at the beach many cars lined the roadsides blocks from the beach.  We have been to this beach about five times and by chance have ended up at the same entrance each time.  Each time we have gotten either the closest parking place to the beach or one just a few cars down.  When Brett saw all the cars parked blocks away he grumbled that we wouldn’t get our usual close parking space.  Just to be contrary I assured him we would get a parking place where we usually did and we drove to the little side road where we usually park.  There was one car waiting for someone to leave so we assumed there were no other parking places.  Brett pulled to the side to do a u-turn and just as we turned around a woman who was walking waved to us and assured us there was another parking space available and she was sure we could fit into it.  We pulled forward and excitedly pulled into the second closest parking place to the beach entrance.

Too many times we walk by sight and not by faith.  We saw a car smaller than ours waiting for another car to pull out so they could park so we believed there were no other parking places.  But, there was a place we couldn’t see and we were thankful for the woman who told us it was there.  We can walk by what we can see in this world and end up far, far away from where we wanted to be, but if we keep our eyes on Jesus that is all we need to see to know He will point us to the right parking place for us.

After parallel parking the Outback, we loaded ourselves down with our beach gear.  Brett carried the chairs, Aspen carried her bag of beach toys and I carried the bag of towels, water, sunscreen, and other misc. items we might need once on the beach.  We found our spot on the beach and Brett unfolded the chairs.  I plopped into mine ready to relax in the sunshine while Brett and Aspen found a spot to build sand castles and wade in the water.  The water was still cold so not many people braved its chill.  After awhile I noticed Brett pointing to something in the distance.  I wasn’t sure what he was pointing at, as it turns out he was pointing to a couple of sharks swimming behind a young man on a paddle board.  No one else seemed to see the sharks.  But, about fifteen minutes later when a couple of pre-teen girls jumping waves saw the sharks swimming not far from them, the water immediately cleared of people.

If only we reacted to sin the way those people in the ocean reacted to the sharks; Stay far, far away!

God wants nothing more than to spend all day every day with us.  He works in ways we can see and ways that remain hidden to us.  His work is like watching a machine with millions of small and large wheels spinning together in unison.  The bigger wheels spinning slower, the smaller wheels spinning faster.  The machine is so big you can’t see all of it at once but you know that all the parts work together to make the machine move and create the end results he created it to do.

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