“So they pulled their boats up on shore,
left everything and
” Come on now, jump! One…two…three!”
As our son stood on the edge of the swimming pool, I did my best to coax him to jump in. He stood, watching the other children do what their swim teachers were instructing them to do.
They were laying on mini boards, kicking their legs. Some were practicing blowing bubbles in the water. They were laughing and splashing. He wanted so bad to please his teacher and his mama, but he was afraid to come all the way into the water.
“Try again. I’ll count to three, then you jump, and I’ll catch you!”
Our mommy and me swim lessons were off to a great start so far. I was going into my 9th month of pregnancy with my daughter and struggled to stay upright. If I could handle keeping my balance in an Olympic sized pool full of children, surely our son could at least come into the water. It’s not that he was resistant to pools, it’s that he didn’t have his water wings. He was simply afraid.
After a little more coaxing, he finally threw one leg out and leaned in. Only, he didn’t jump up and out. As soon as his momentum began to pull him to the water, he quickly twisted his body, and grabbed hold of the side of the pool.
He was in, he just wasn’t all in.
How often do we do this?
We want to go back to school or go after a new job but there’s no safety net.
Perhaps we have a dream that has been nagging at us for so long that it is beginning to seem impossible.
We want to lean in to our faith a little harder but we’re afraid of where that may lead.
We look down and stare at our toes, right on the edge of the line. We see the sweat drip from our brow down to our feet. In our peripheral vision, we see others who have taken the leap. They’re jumping and smiling and are in their element. They don’t even look back at the side of the pool anymore because the good stuff is found out in the deep.
Maybe we’ve taken a half leap into that next step, and we are suffering for it. Things don’t go as we think they should so we question what we are doing. We’re sore, feeling beat up as we stick our toe into our future, only to pull it back at the first hint of discomfort. We’re tired because we have half of our time spent on moving forward while our other half is spent in the comfortable.
This is when we have to make some decisions.
He is beckoning us to trust Him.
He’s asking…”are you all in?”.
After a few of these leans into the water, his little fingertips began to feel raw from the concrete pool edge. He was getting winded as he would jump in and immediately swing his leg up on the edge to pull himself right back out. There was no fun in it. He wanted more.
Don’t we want more?
You know how this ends. Once he finally took a real, genuine leap into the pool, he realized there was nothing to fear. I was always within arm’s reach. His teacher kept his focus on her eyes as she instructed. He felt secure. Safe. He knew he could spread his arms and extend his legs and experience the freedom that a swimmer has. All without fear of sinking.
When Jesus called His disciples, they dropped what they were doing and followed the call. Luke 5 tells us that Simon, James and John literally pulled their boats out of the water, and left them behind. No looking back.
Christ gave His all for you and for me. He didn’t turn around and grab hold of the edge when his Father called him to lay down his life for us. He trusted that his Father’s plan was the perfect plan and He kept his eyes on Him while constantly moving forward.
Because Christ gave His all, I believe He calls us to do the same. An even exchange. When we experience unrest in our spiritual lives and have difficulty leaving the ledge, perhaps it’s because we want everything He has for us while we only hand him a portion of ourselves. It’s in handing him only pieces of ourselves that we can begin to feel pulled apart.
If Jesus is calling us out, we need to be all in.
That job. That dream. That life of faith.
Let’s leave the ledge. Leap out. Let go.
Even if we do it scared. We can’t go wrong. He won’t let us sink.
Thank you that you love us right where we are, but that you love us too much to let us stay there. Help us to stay focused on you as you lead us to strengthen our faith and love you more. Help us to jump BIG and to be all in.
In Jesus’ name,