“I’ve learned to kiss the wave that strikes me against the Rock of Ages.”
I ran across this quote on Pinterest and it hasn’t left my mind since. The profound calling and conviction contained in that short sentence is overwhelming. God has continued to put this theme in my face recently… I think He’s trying to tell me something… which leaves me wanting to share it with you all.
I heard something similar to the above quote in an online sermon from The Village Church’s Exodus series just today. I’ve heard the story of Moses many times throughout my life, as I grew up in church & went to a Christian school. I appreciate historical context & original Greek/Hebrew meanings so much more now, as an adult, so the stories are becoming richer to me, as I see how God works in everything.
The sermon where God brought up this topic of “kissing the wave” was not preached by Matt Chandler, the head pastor of The Village Church. I was a little disappointed when the video loaded & it wasn’t him standing there on the stage. Anyways, the sermon was almost over & I was thinking how I couldn’t wait for the next sermon that Matt would be preaching. Then the guy says something to this effect: If my situation was “normal,” I wouldn’t know God like I do. I had to rewind & write down what he said. WOWSERS. Yes, I’ve heard this before, but it really hit home, in light of the Spurgeon quote.
I can go back in time & think of all the situations I wouldn’t trade for the world. I can also envision the situations that I would trade in a hot second. I can picture the perfect, pain-free version of my life and I like being able pick & choose which parts to of reality I’d like to edit. I think of all of mid-20’s aged people I know who have had nothing rip their worlds and hearts to shreds, who wouldn’t trade any of their life for anything. I immediately am frustrated, confused, mad & jealous all at once…
These 2 convicting quotes remind me that the tough realities I face everyday result in a closer walk with the Lord, as I am forced to rely on Him for things I never imagined having to lean on Him for.
I am willing to confess my “eye roll” attitude here. I get it. I know that what God is producing in me (i.e. wisdom, love, patience, etc.) couldn’t be produced any other way. But gosh, I would’ve been fine, really fine, actually, really great, had the part of my story where my dad emotionally cut himself off from me wouldn’t have happened. I wouldn’t be soaking up the most perfect, unconditional love to ever exist had my dad continued to love me. Yes, I get it. And yes, this fleshy attitude may be why God has been really speaking to me about my view on suffering.
I participated in a Bible study last year called, “Looking for Lovely.” You can probably guess the theme without me telling you, but the theme was that suffering produces good & lovely things in us, while God is doing lovely things all around us & that you have to intentionally look for the lovely things around you in the midst of trials. The central “equation” for the book was: suffering produces perseverance, perseverance produces character, and character produces hope.
Obviously, God is communicating a few truths to me about suffering & I think those truths are important for all of us, whether our life-sea is stormy or peaceful right now.
Feel free to share what God has taught or is teaching you about suffering!