Thursday, July 22, 2010

Just when you thought it was safe to come out of the bathtub

The morning after the unfortunate run in with the jellyfish, I went on my morning bikeride surveillance trip. I came with the highly sensitive monitoring device known colloquially as the "mommy danger detector". I have one of the most responsive detectors available, sensitive down to one shark tooth. With my radar system in place, off I rode as the sun awoke, to do any necessary mine sweeping before my darlings' toes touched a single grain of sand.

The good news was that not a single deadly Portugese Man Of War had washed ashore. That meant the currents had swept them back to Australia with the other 9 most deadly creatures
known to mankind.

There were very few of the other more innocuous jelly blobs as well so I was feeling increasingly at ease for my loved ones safety in our harrowing upcoming day at the beach. That is when I saw the alligator. I rubbed my eyes to be sure it was not just an alligator shaped scratch on my contacts, but it did not rub away. There in the ocean surf was a four foot gator. A good Samaritan there had called wildlife control who was on the way to remove this extra set of teeth from our peaceful frolic in the waves. I took a video knowing my loved ones would never believe me and pedalled onward. Within a half mile, I saw a man holding a large wriggling creature near the surf. I biked over as my warning siren was blasting my eardrum. A huge stingray was flapping in the man's hand. He held the Ray by the tail and his other hand clamped a pliers on a pointy thing near the upper tail back.
"won't he sting you?" I asked.
"That's why I am holding the pliers here," explained the man.
"Can I take his picture?" I asked,
"Or will it hurt him to stay out of the water?"
(like I wanted this new threat to live and thrive....)
"I'll just hold him in the water til you get your camera ready," he said while gently submerging the Ray.
Then he told me he was stung by one of these yesterday .
"Oh?" I said, "are they dangerous?"
"Spent two hours in the hospital. Remember Steve Irwin, crocodile
Man? One of these is what killed him."
I snapped my picture and watched as he released the would be murderer to my ocean.

As I biked on, I thought of my blog from yesterday citing my faith in God's protection and
I had a chat with God.
"What are you telling me Lord? Those were two dangers I had not even known enough to worry about. Did you not think my list of nightmares was long enough?"

We had already planned a day of kayaking on Broad Creek in search of dolphins. That gave me an extra day to scrub away those images of rows of teeth and barbs of death.

Within an hour of us paddling out to the sound, dolphins surrounded us. Many surfaced just a few feet from our kayaks, their intelligent kindly faces breaking through the murky water.

I think often God's messages come in sequels. If you just read the first book, you don't know
the whole story. At least that is how He often speaks to me. I am impatient to draw conclusions, but I think God with the perspective of eternity wants me to gather more evidence.

Yes, the ocean is replete with terrifying creatures. But side by side with them, and inexplicably friendly to humans were the dolphins. Every morning as I bike along the beach I see them, just off shore, playing tag with the first sunbeams of the day. I think perhaps it is their sparkling forms God wants me to direct my gaze. Past the alligators and the Sting rays in the surf, past the jellyfish or the neck crunching waves. Seek the curved fin of a Friend.

Psalm 23:4
Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil, for you are with me; your rod and your staff, they comfort me.

- Nothing is impossible with God

1 comment:

  1. " . . . an alligator shaped scratch on my contacts . . ." Hahaha!