Buoy Me Up

The ocean is relatively flat in this sheltered harbor. Gentle swells buoy my husband and me up and down as we tread water 50 yards from the shore. We’re more accustomed to clear, flat, chlorinated swimming pools. Swimming in the ocean is a rare treat. Quickly we notice the buoyancy of the salt water is quite different from pool water.

Soon I realize that I can keep myself afloat with just gentle kicks or quiet sweeps of my hands. Before long I discover another surprise. Between the salt water and my additional pounds, I can afloat upright, breathing easily, without kicking or stroking. I cross my legs and place my arms down at my sides. Still upright, my head stays above water.  Keeping very still, I find my body gradually tipping; the waves have gently pushed, and I find myself on my back, still afloat. When I face the shore, my body gently tips forward, and I now float on my stomach.  Being able to stay upright in the water with my head above the water without working to stay afloat amazes me! Very quickly Scott also adapts to this new buoyancy, and we enjoy our time in the waves, staying above water effortlessly. All we need is a few gentle hand strokes or kicks to keep our balance.

If only it were so easy to adjust to God’s buoyancy! After many years and many trials I’ve learned that God keeps me afloat even in the darkest of times. He keeps my head up even in the biggest waves of life. Yet still, how often I vigorously kick and press my hands against the waves, working desperately to keep my head above the water, forgetting that God buoys me up. If only I could learn to relax and allow him to buoy me up and keep my head above the waters that threaten to suffocate me. How often I kick and struggle, wearing myself out instead of giving in and allowing God to take control and buoy me up.

Father God, help me to trust in You and allow Your buoyancy to keep my head above the waves. Buoy me up Lord, buoy me up.

Psalm 33:20-22 (NIV) “We wait in hope for the Lord; he is our help and our shield. In him our hearts rejoice, for we trust in his holy name. May your unfailing love rest upon us, O Lord, even as we put our hope in you.”

In what ways have you learned to put your trust in God to keep you afloat in difficult times?

Published by nancyhamiltonsturm

After raising a family and then teaching for over 20 years, I retired from full-time work. Now I spend time with family, tap dance, take long walks in nature, read, and write. I have published two stories in Chicken Soup for the Soul books and over a dozen devotions. My current goal is to publish a book of meditations over the gospels and to share my devotional writing on my blog. I hope you enjoy and are inspired.

4 thoughts on “Buoy Me Up

  1. So much spiritual understanding can be derived from experiencing the lessons we learn from God’s wonderful creation….as expressed in your post. It so confirms the truth of Romans 1:20. Blessings to you!


  2. Yes!!!! My husband also uses this picture of floating to illustrate the Gospel! (Although his description is less eloquent. 😉)


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