Last updated on June 18, 2022
Recently some friends and I were discussing when we feel closest to God. I sheepishly responded I feel closest to God when I am writing or scuba diving. I feared that didn’t make me sound very spiritual— until someone remarked that’s probably when I feel most needy.
I reminisced back to my diving days before kids. Away from the noise and distractions of a busy life, I would be overcome with the immense beauty and vastness of the world beneath the ocean.
On one night dive in the Florida Keys, my dive buddy and I were at seventy-five feet. We were diving off a shipwreck, and when I shone my underwater light on the rustic red side of a sunken boat, I discovered a brown caterpillar-like creature with tons of legs.
He was edging his way along at a rather slow pace. I probably stunned him by
the intrusion of my bright light in what was otherwise total blackness.
As I floated beside the ship and examined the peculiar worm,
I wondered why, in the middle of the vast Atlanta Ocean, I would discover this rather ugly creature.
Asking questions of seeming insignificance can lead to discussions latent with deeper meaning. Why did God create me? Are the things we stumble upon in life purely by chance?
Twenty-five years later, I’ve not forgotten that worm at the bottom of the ocean’s depths. I am reminded that our words bear witness to God’s nature in all of nature. We feel God’s pleasure in the stories that we tell—the stories that touch us deeply.
One worm found its way into a Bible story. In the book of Jonah in the Old Testament, God sent Jonah to warn the people of the city of Nineveh to repent of their ways. After being eaten by the whale, Jonah traveled to the wicked city and did as God had asked him. But when God didn’t destroy the city and spared the inhabitants, Jonah brooded over God’s mercy to Israel’s enemies. Then God supplied a plant to give Jonah shade as he sat angry in the hot noonday sun. The next day, however, God provided a worm to eat the plant. Sometimes
my life seems like that. What is God is trying to teach me?
Diving into the depths of the ocean reminds me of diving into the depths of God’s love. I see His creativity in the world of worms, garden eels, and sea urchins; manta rays that glide over the sea wall, nurse sharks that hide under rocky ledges, and barracuda that amass in the hundreds.
God’s underwater paradise gives me hope that harmony with the world through Him is possible. I may not understand it all, but I don’t have to. Perhaps God just wants me to enjoy the journey and channel His creativity that I so much love
into my soul.
As my kids get older, I look forward to once again putting on the weight belt, BC, tank, and octopus. I always enjoyed spitting into my face mask to clean it (after all, how many times in life is that acceptable behavior); and, of course, getting that last strand of hair out of the mask so
as not to burn my eyes with seeping saltwater. I can’t wait to push that regulator button and hear the compressed air spew out (pretty important down there to be able to breathe) and I will waddle like a duck in all my gear to the back of the boat and wait my turn (imagining I look better than I feel with the cumbersome tank on my back).
I will make sure I remember all those hand signals (the out-of-air one might come in handy), and hopefully, heave off the back of the boat in a spectacular somersault.
The rising bubbles as I sink and the sound of the regulator imitating my breathing will bring me back to my favorite pastime. I will be wooed once more to enjoy God’s presence in a world of unparalleled beauty where even a worm bears witness to His unconditional love.
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To enjoy more of Lorilyn Roberts’ writings, check out her website at LorilynRoberts.com.