There's a tiny island a little over a mile off shore from where we live. Mission Haiti likes to give the teams a respite to this little oasis in the sea when they come here. Usually after a week of hard work, you'll catch sight of a few Haitians rowing in with their fishing boats, and something's not right. You wonder what it is, and then, ahhh yes, there's no nets. They've made room for visitors.
My wife and kids went back in March, and they came back raving about it. Me, I never really cared to go. I'm not a son of the Big Blue you know, it's always been mountains for me, and tall ones with ice on the tops. If God wanted me in the water, why, he'd have given me webbed fingers and toes! I'm of the Jeremiah Johnson variety....I got no gills, pilgrim!
Still, a couple of weeks ago they had extra room and my kids were invited to go along. Kari wanted to stay behind, so it fell to me to be the dad and go with the kids. Later I found out that was her ploy. She would've gone in a heartbeat, but she wanted me to go with them and experience it.
Our captain and first mate were the top rowers in the bunch, and so our boat reached the beach first, and we poured out to explore. Right away the kids darted here and there, screaming in pure joy as they discovered giant seashells. It was like a Caribbean Easter Egg hunt, looking for them in the water, half buried in the sand.
I borrowed my daughter's bright pink goggles, of which there will be no images to document, and started walking into the blue. I couldn't believe that I was hundreds of yards off the island, but standing in only a few inches of water. Benson came with me, and we walked out to the reef where the waves curl over and topple in. I picked up some very beautiful shells for my kids, and then I put on the goggles and had a look below.
There beneath, in only a few feet of water, were several varieties of fish. They'd come out, have a look at me, and then dart back into their coral homes. It had a very Finding Nemo feel.
I floated there for almost an hour in pure amazement of God's underwater creation. My hands ran over the different rainbow colors of coral, just long enough to take it in and smile, and then the waves above would carry me away to a brand new scene. Each breath was a new act, with an entirely new set of characters coming out of their homes to have a look at me.
"Oh Lord! I didn't know you had that color in your palette! Wow, God...good job on that zebra fish! I never would have guessed it! Hmmmm, I can't believe you made these so soft...and that starfish, it was so magnificent....just a a little starfish, and You went all out! God, why did you go to all the effort?!"
To which I feel the answer come,
"Ahhhh, Danny, because I can."
Makes me think if He took so much care and detail in something so small, what kind of plans did He have for me?
There are so many great books, so many great ideas and stories and experiences, and some books leave you thirsty for more. But then there's God's story, and I can drink it in deeply, to my fullest. I'm never left wanting. There's always so very much more!
All these years I've been so smitten by what He did up in the high country, and now I feel so richly blessed to see even more of His imagination. It's almost as if I got to peel back just a wee bit more about my Maker. I've been able to turn the page, and discover an entirely new page, with words yet to be appreciated. My Author has an entire novel, and some days I think I'm no deeper into Him than the introduction. I've only just barely read the title, and I can't breathe.