Swimming Out to Sea

Let me share a story with you.  A farmer kept on having his hen-house raided by foxes, so one night, he took out his hounds, his gun and went after the foxes.  When the hounds caught the scent of the foxes, they went wild and started chasing them, herding them towards the river.  Half the foxes turned and struck back at the hounds, while the others leapt into the river and swam across.  But the farmer noticed something, halfway across the river, some of the foxes stopped swimming for shore, but turned and began to swim with the current.  Days later, fishermen spot these same foxes miles off the coast, still swimming out to sea. 

I originally heard this story told by Admiral William Adama in the final season of Battlestar Galactica. 

When faced with difficult decisions, human (and animal) instinct is to fight or flight.  It has kept us alive so far.  But sometimes we find ourselves overwhelmed, tired, looking at the world with tears in our eyes.  So we give up.  Or we try to. 

Like the foxes who turn with the current.  We are just going along for the ride, trying to keep our heads above water until we are too exhausted to continue on.  We are willing to die, but we cannot give up. 

I look around and I see this happening to too many people, to too many friends.  And at times I find myself swimming with the current.  Sometimes we find ourselves giving up on ourselves, life and God. 

We can survive treading water, trying to keep our heads above water, but that is all we can do.  God did not create us just to survive in this world, He created us so that we can live.  To live life to the fullest. 

There will be times that we find ourselves on the run, that we are forced to fight, that we feel like we do not have the strength to go on.  But that is part of living.  And so is resting. 

There is another story about swimming out to sea, one that I cannot place, but I remember none the less:  Two brothers start swimming out into the stormy and unknown sea, trying to see who can reach the other side, to see if either of them have the courage not to turn back.  And so they swim as the waves crash over them, lightning lighting the waters around them.  And for hours they continue on, until one decides that if he continues, he will not have the strength to make it back.  So he turns around. 

I’ll stop the story there.  If we are too scared to continue along the path God has placed out for us, how will we ever know where he is trying to lead us.  There is a point of no return, where you know in your heart that you can make it back, but at the same time, we look ahead and still don’t see what we are striving for. 

We continue on with only hope.  With only the strength that comes from God. 

We step out and discover how to truly live. 

That is my challenge to you.  Find the strength from God to continue on, to not give up or turn back, but continue to follow the path that he has placed out in front of you. 

God Bless and PEACE

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