The water wasn’t very deep where she was standing, so she began to take a few more steps. A little at a time the water crept up, but not enough to deter her from taking another pace towards the unknown.
He told her not to venture past a certain point, but she did it anyway- trespassing in territory completely off limits. It made her feel free, independent, and not so childlike in the eyes of the surrounding teenagers.
All these baby steps added up to one fearful moment when the water was over her head. She knew how to swim, but she panicked. The group of teens she was trying to impress earlier had their backs to her, conversing in a semi-circle.
They were distracted and laughing with one another. They didn’t see her struggling to stay afloat. She reached out hoping to grab on to the back of the teenage girl who was closest to her. But the girl could not feel the small fingers which were just barely making contact with her back. She couldn’t hear the cry for help.
When the sinking child reached far enough to gain the teen’s attention from slight scratches and cries for help, the girl finally turned around. The teen realized what was happening, but couldn’t help. Instead, she just stood there with a look of terror, frozen with fear. She had no idea how to save the struggling little girl.
And then he swooped in to save her.
He never had his eyes off her, not for a second. He ran from his nearby spot on the blanket and scooped her up while gently scolding her, “I told you not to go past a certain spot. You need to learn to listen. I love you. Are you okay?”
The sinking child was me, and my dad was my saving grace that day. I ran into trouble, because I deliberately disobeyed him, and he rescued me for the same reason any parent would. Love.
Parents have a desperate, unconditional, love for their children. It runs deeper than a child’s disobedience and bad choices.
As parents, we are connected to our children by a powerful love that can overwhelm all sense of reason. It does not matter what they’ve done. We assume our roles as protectors and defenders.
I don’t think any of us have the comprehension to know the depth of God’s love for us, but having children of our own definitely gives us a tiny taste of what it must be like.
There comes a time when we learn that only God has the power to save us. And many times, He is saving us from ourselves.
We all have the ability to make bad choices and fall into sin so deep that it becomes impossible for anyone else but the Father to save us.
We might reach out to people who have their backs turned. Many of us will become desperate for attention from people who will have no idea how to help us. And yet, God in all His glory reaches in and plucks us out of our sinking situations- even when it’s our fault that we’ve ended up there.
And in the midst of all this, there is something I’ve noticed.
There are many people who recognize what Christ has done for them, but they have difficulty forgiving themselves for having once waded into deeper waters.
So, today, if you are suffering guilt from past mistakes…
- Believe He sent His only Son to die for you and reconcile you to Him. (John 3:16, Colossians 1:19-20)
- Repent of your past mistakes. (Acts 3:19)
- Once you’ve repented, understand He forgives your sins and remembers them no more (Psalm 103:12)
- Recognize He loves you more than you can ever begin to comprehend (Luke 12:7)
- Rest in His promises (2 Peter 1:3-5)
Through it all, He has forgiven you and you must forgive yourself!
He is the only lifeline, the saving grace, and there is nothing He cannot do. And that includes forgiving you!