Yet day after day they seek me and delight to know my ways, as if they were a nation that practiced righteousness and did not forsake the ordinance of their God; they ask of me righteous judgments, they delight to draw near to God. (Isaiah 58:2 NRSV)I remember a man named John who was vacationing on the beach with his family near Savannah, Georgia. One day John was swimming alone at high tide when he was hit by a huge wave. The force of the wave knocked him unconscious for a few moments. When he came to, John realized that he was face down under water. Fortunately the powerful force of the wave had knocked him toward the shoreline. The water was not very deep, but he could not move. He was face down, under water, and totally helpless.
"This is it!" John thought to himself. "This is how it all ends for me! I'm going to die! I'm going to drown right here in the shallow waters of the Atlantic Ocean!" A little boy saw John lying face down in the water. He ran to tell his parents, "Mom! Dad! Come quick and help me! There's a man drowning down here!" His parents were resting under their beach umbrella and didn't take the boy seriously. They told him to go and play. The little boy wouldn't take no for an answer. He grabbed his parents by their hands and literally pulled them down to where the surf was pounding on the beach and where John was drowning. They pulled John out of the water as the mother ran for help. John was rushed to the hospital where he would be in intensive care and on life support for several days. Today John is alive and well!
This accident served as John's wake-up call to life. In fact John claims it was the best thing that ever happened to him. It changed his life. It changed his values, his commitments, his concerns. It changed his priorities. It drew him closer to his family. It taught him how to celebrate the preciousness of life. It brought him closer to God!
Loving God, today may I take some important steps to come closer to you and act on what you call me to do. Amen.