A couple of years ago, my family took a little trip to Oklahoma to see Karena’s family. Karena’s cousin has a couple of jet-skis, and this day, the lake was perfect. I took Asher on a little ride; he loves stuff like that. We loafed around the lake, and then I brought him back and took Mayli and Jaxson out on the tube.
A little while later, Asher wanted to ride with me again. So, I decided to let him get a genuine jet-ski experience.
We went a little faster, to which he happily screamed and was having a blast.
I did a few donuts on the jet-ski, to which he happily screamed and said, “do it again, da-da!” So, we turned in circles and made waves, and then we jumped those waves, to which he happily screamed and was still having a blast. Imagine the picture of peaceful tranquility, the gleeful cheers of a 3-year- old boy, and the proud grin of an accomplished dad.
Then it happened.
The waves began to get rough and choppy. So, I told Asher we were going to head back to shore. One of the waves hits us on the side of the jet-ski. Before I knew it, the jet-ski was dumping over in the middle of the lake! In a split second, we went from jubilee to glee as my 3-year old is now flying through the air in slow motion.
I managed to catch him as we were going down, and he was in pure panic mode. As was I. You see, the waves were becoming so violent that they were pushing the jet-ski closer to shore, and they were pouring over us, so much that I had to hold Asher up in the air each time a wave passed.
I was frantic but trying to maintain my composure so that I could calm my 3-year-old down. There was no way I could ever get to that jet-ski, no matter how hard I tried to backstroke with a 3-year-old on my stomach! Finally, the other jet-ski saw us and came and rescued us.
I remember, as we first plunged into the water. Asher was kicking and clawing, and you could hear the terror and panic in his voice. Yet, I noticed later that as I held him close and told him, “don’t worry, daddy has you” that he just held on to me as tight as he could and stopped screaming. As long as he knew I was holding him, he was confident everything was going to be alright.
That experience left an indelible mark on me. I was reminded of just how unpredictable, and even sometimes violent, life could be. In one moment, everything is okay. You’re enjoying life, having a blast. The next moment a wave comes out of nowhere and sends you spiraling into the unforgiving waters. Sometimes you may feel like your drowning in the middle of the lake, and no one even knows the battle you are engaged in, yet if you hold on to Jesus, you can have peace in the middle of your storms.