As soon as I hit the water I began to swim out but all that spinning had disoriented me and I was swimming in the wrong direction. That’s when I met Lifeguard Sydney with the red beads.
“Jesus said unto her, I am the resurrection, and the life: he that believeth in me, though he were dead, yet shall he live: And whosoever liveth and believeth in me shall never die. Believest thou this?” John 11:25,26 (KJV)
Here in North Florida, we have a really cool waterpark called Adventure Landing. It was about 100 degrees here yesterday, so I thought it would be fun to play hooky from work and take the kids there to splash around. It was, we had a blast. There was one ride in particular called Eye Of The Storm, affectionately known as the ‘toilet bowl’, where our story today takes place.
The Eye Of The Storm water ride in an enclosed tube attraction that rises up about 50 feet up in the air. The idea is you walk the five flights of steps up to the top, climb into the completely dark tube, hold onto the launching rails and cast yourself off into complete darkness at what feels like 60 MPH. You swirl down at lightning speed and are deposited at the top of a very large bowl and you spin around in circles before falling through a narrow opening at the bottom leading to an 8 foot deep pool. Pretty intense if you ask me.
The Eye Of The Storm:
The first 20 seconds of this video is of someone wearing a GoPro camera while traveling through the Eye Of The Storm ride. It will give you an excellent idea of what the experience is like!
So when it came my turn to go, for a brief moment, I nearly chickened out. I stood there for a second, motionless, and wondering just how much I trusted the creator of this ride. And just like our last story of the renegade balloon, it was at this exact moment that the Lord started talking to me. I love when He does that.
Yes, just how much I trusted the creator of the Eye Of The Storm ride was indeed the issue. Because if I did trust that whoever it was that built it had built it well, it would be a great experience. But what was first required of me was the willingness to take the ride. The last thought that went through my head was how what I was about to do was a great metaphor for the ride we are all on called Life, and what would be waiting for me on the ‘other side’ of the journey. And off I went!
I felt my body twisting and turning as the river of water covered my on all sides, traveling at hyperspeed, and I couldn’t see a thing. Suddenly, like an explosion, the light came back on as I found myself careening across the top of the bowl, round and round till I slipped through the opening at the bottom and into the receiving pool. As soon as I hit the water I began to swim out but all that spinning had disoriented me and I was swimming in the wrong direction. That’s when I met Lifeguard Sydney with the red beads.
Lifeguard Sydney stood in the gap, and expertly waved me over to where she was standing. I readjusted my course and headed out, and this time in the right direction. As I got up and out of the pool, she called my attention to the beads that she wore around her neck. I noticed that there were 10 red beads, and one white one as she began to speak.
“See these red beads?”, she said. “Each one of those red beads stands for someone I saved by pulling them out of the pool when they got in trouble.” As she spoke, the Lord said to me, “see my red blood? It is able to save all those who apply it.” I batted away the tears I knew would flow, hoping Lifeguard Sydney wouldn’t notice. She continued.
“See this white bead?”, she asked. “Yes”, I said, “what is the white bead for?”
“This white bead means I am certified to save people.” Oh boy. The Lord said to me, “see my Son wearing His robe of perfect whiteness?” “Yes, Lord”, I said in my head, “I sure do.”
“That means He is able to save all those who call upon Him.”, the Lord said to me.
And in that exact moment, for me, Heaven and Earth met, and I saw Jesus in the face of Lifeguard Sydney as she spoke. The ride I had just taken is exactly like the ride I have been taking these past many years. Life happens sometimes at hyperspeed, endless twists and turns, and sometimes it feels like we are operating in pitch black darkness. Feeling our way through and hoping it all comes out well on the ‘other side’. The Eye Of The Storm water ride is a pretty perfect metaphor for life, and so is Lifeguard Sydney.
“Who hath delivered us from the power of darkness, and hath translated us into the kingdom of his dear Son: In whom we have redemption through his blood, even the forgiveness of sins:” 1 Colossians 1:13,14 (KJV)
How about you? Have you met The Lifeguard of the Universe? The One who created everything just by speaking it into existence? Because we are all eternal souls who, after our ride in the eye of the storm is over, will spend eternity in one of two places. Heaven or Hell. If you want to wind up in Heaven, you’re going to need a Lifeguard.
Lifeguard Sydney was waiting for me at the end of my ride, and though I was never in trouble, it sure was comforting to know that she was standing there in the gap watching out for me.
Who is watching over you, right now, as you breathe God’s air and feel the blood beat in the heart He kickstarted for you on the day you were born? Do you know The Lifeguard, Jesus Christ, who wears the white robe and offers you the red blood that was shed so that you could go free? He has never lost a single soul, and He won’t lose you either if you trust Him to get you safely to the other side when this ride of life comes to an end.
“My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me: And I give unto them eternal life; and they shall never perish, neither shall any man pluck them out of my hand.” John 10:27,28 (KJV)