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Observations from the Stream

Posted by hughrandle@gmail.com on February 10, 2014 at 10:00 PM



The following are observations which I made while canoeing on the Flat River on May 23, 2007. I made the trip in order to spend some time alone with God and the observations I wrote came very quickly and clearly. God truly appears in nature and it is my favorite place to seek Him out. 1. Life without God is a lot like paddling upstream- it takes a lot of effort, but you don’t get anywhere very quickly. 2. Handing life to God is like letting go of the oar and is effortless- like floating downstream 3. Even downstream you need to occasionally steer with the oar ( representing decisions). 4. The direction you steer ( the decisions you make) determine whether you end up in the center of the stream ( within God’s will) or too close to the shore. 5. Letting go and letting God doesn’t mean there won’t be resistance and obstacles in the stream. 6. When you put your oar in the water and try to fight where God is taking you, you go nowhere. 7. You notice more when you are going downstream ( within God’s will) versus when you are struggling upstream ( trying on your own). 8. Look underwater. You have a lot of company on the trip. You are definitely part of a bigger story which God has created. 9. The feel of beauty around you gives you a taste for wanting something more ( Heaven). 10. When you are giving it over to God (downstream) you can rest. If you rest when you are trying to do it all on your own ( upstream), you lose ground and fall behind. 11. You will be tempted to know what would have been ahead upstream, but God assures you that what lies ahead downstream is best for your heart. 12. Salmon go upstream to die. So do humans. 13. On the stream and in your life, there is more going on around you than you realize. 14. The shallower the water (your life), the harder it is to paddle upstream. Fortunately, it is easier then to hand things over to God. When things are going okay in your life on your own (deeper water, less current) it is harder to hand things over to God. You get lulled into the sense that you can do it on your own. 15. While writing these ideas from God down, there was a beautiful girl on the shore. It reminded me that there is an enemy who doesn’t want you to receive messages from God. Distractions come in all sizes and types. 16. God will show you many spectacular things if you are patient ( box turtles, jumping bass were among the amazing things I saw this day). 17. There will be times when you don’t “feel” like you are moving ( making progress). But watch the shore- you are . 18. Sometimes the canoe gets turned around and you are going backwards and cannot see where God is leading you. That is okay for that is how faith develops. 19. There are many detours ( side streams) along the way. Most are dead-ends. None of them will get you where God wants to take you. 20. Sometimes the current is swifter than you think you can handle. You are afraid. Sometimes it is deep, wide and overwhelming. This is where you need to let God pilot. “Be still and know that I am God”. 21. There are quiet coves ( resting places) along the way. These are respites that God gives you to allow you to renew your faith. 22. There are spots on the river where you cannot see too far in front of you and places where you can see ahead for what seems miles. This is the gift of clarity. Again it is best not to worry because this too is a faith and trust issue. 23. Bring your pole with you. Don’t just observe, be active. Be a participant not just a watcher. God wants those who are fishers of men. You have the great commission to follow. John 10:10 tells us that God wants us to have life to the fullest. It is a wise verse to follow.

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