Recently I was on vacation with my family at the beach. I enjoy wading out deep enough to float around and face back to the beach while watching the kids play in the water. It’s usually around this depth that most of the waves will gently roll past you. Still, some will crash on you.
One such wave crashed over me and as we came up out of the water, my daughter asked if I’m ever surprised when the waves crash since I float with my back to them. As any good father would, I scientifically explained how I knew a wave was coming because the water would go down indicating the imminent arrival of a wave. About the time I said those words, a wave crashed over me – and surprised me.
Not too long ago I was surprised by a wave in life and I should have seen it coming. I was struggling in many areas and nothing seemed to work well at the time. Even the tasks I am uniquely gifted for were not easy to accomplish. These should have been signs some type of crash was imminent.
Still, I did not see the wave coming when the man who had mentored me for fourteen years announced his retirement. This crashing wave left me disoriented. I didn’t know which way was up as the world I knew and had planned on was suddenly obliterated. I felt trapped.
Sometimes we will get caught in a crashing wave that surprises us. When you find yourself in this concussion of confusion, the following actions can become your life saver:
- Remember how God has rescued you in the past.
- Renew your commitment to prayer, remembering to listen more than you speak.
- Renew your commitment to finding answers in Scripture.
- Seek the wise counsel of a mentor, coach or trusted friend (someone who is a third party to your situation is preferred for greater perspective).
- Seek counseling from a pastor or professional counselor
Sometimes waves can be fun to ride. In part two of “Surprised by the Wave,” I’ll discuss waves that bring in seasons of great joy and productivity.