Sunday, May 29, 2016

The Peace of God Trespassed Upon

My husband surprised me yesterday.
"Shall we go kayaking?" he asked.
I blinked. "You and you?"

See, hubby is not really keen on kayaking. I know of very few people who enjoy kayaking as much as I. I don't go for any of the thrills, speed, or even exercise...I kayak because it is peaceful and beautiful. I kayak because I see God's creatures all around me, and I love them. I kayak because the water sings, and rocks, and smells wholesome and pure and good. I kayak because my muscles enjoy the rhythm and movement which they were designed for, and my lungs fill fully with fresh air God has surrounded our unlikely planet with. When I kayak, I feel God's presence.

"Yes, if you want to," hubby said.

So he loaded the car with our two kayaks and we went to Lake Wylie. As I feared on this holiday weekend, it was mobbed. Everyone and his brother was on the lake in gas-guzzling motorboats and jet-skis. I will freely admit my bias. I hate motorboats and jet-skis. They pollute the lake, the air, and the sound barrier. If I could ban them, I would. There is a sign at the launch site that fishermen may fish, but are strongly advised not to eat more than one fish a week caught in Lake Wylie, due to pollution.

My parents were great parents, and they taught me one thing supremely well. The world is full of free, non-polluting activities that feed the body and soul. Do them. So they taught me to sail, bikeride, skate, canoe, run, play tennis, cross-country ski, and enjoy long walks. All free. None use any fossil fuel or pollute the environment.

I tried desperately to teach my children that same value. I don't know if I succeeded. One for sure begged me over and over to rent a jet-ski. I refused. Firstly, I couldn't afford it. Secondly, I am morally opposed.

That's a strong position I am taking, isn't it?

But do you know what happens on holiday weekends when the jet-skis and motor boats are churning the waters, fouling the air with diesel fuel, and overpowering the sounds of the birds? The wildlife vanishes. The fresh smell of the water or hamburgers being grilled on the shore is drenched instead with the smell of exhaust fumes. The peaceful swells of the water become crashing, swirling waves. The peace of God is trespassed upon by the excess of Man.

I had fun, but hubby and I sought the quiet coves where the loud, gas guzzlers were unlikely to venture. As we kayaked, I told him, "The rare spider lilies are blooming on the Catawba River. I so want to kayak to see them, but I can't. The rapids are probably too much for my healing mastectomy. I would be foolish to go now...but they only bloom for two weeks. I guess I can't see them this year."
"There's a nice path along the river where we could walk and see them," he said.
"Could we do that tomorrow?" I asked, hopeful.


John 14:27 

Peace I leave with you; my peace I give to you. Not as the world gives do I give to you. Let not your hearts be troubled, neither let them be afraid.

And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.

Therefore, since we have been justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ.

Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation. The old has passed away; behold, the new has come.

For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.

For to set the mind on the flesh is death, but to set the mind on the Spirit is life and peace.

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