About a month ago I had a dream about giving someone a hang ten. I couldn’t make out who it was, but I saw my dream-self lit up with joy and that made me pretty happy.
For a few days, I kept thinking about the dream–thinking about how naturally I gave that hang ten like boom, instantly.
Around the same time that I had this dream, I stumbled across the last thirty minutes of the film Chasing Mavericks, which is one of my favorite films about surfing, and in general.
My parents are not ocean lovers, not at all. Going to the beach was not their idea of a family outing. In all the years that we lived in Southern California, I can count on one hand how many times we went. But, even without living near one, I fell in love with the beach.
I was in the fourth grade maybe when I first remember going–it was Santa Monica beach. It was windy and the water was so cold, but I loved every minute of it. I wasn’t even able to swim yet, but I tested my bravery by inching into the waves chest high.
I can’t remember the first time I saw someone surfing, but all I know is when I did that’s all it took. Watching shows like Gidget and surf movies that came on television captivated me. Television and film were, in fact, my only windows to beach living, to surfing.
Anytime I heard The Beach Boys, I thought about surfing.
As a kid, I was shy about desires like wanting to surf–like I had to protect them from ridicule. Not living near an ocean, or having supportive parents, caused me to keep it buried in my heart. I picked up a skateboard in high school instead, thinking that it could be practice somehow for when I finally lived by the ocean and learned to surf on my own.
“If I can’t surf the ocean yet, I’ll just surf pavement until I can,” I remembered saying this in high school.
Jay Moriarity’s story in Chasing Mavericks busted me up in many ways–one way was with his passion. Passion compelled him, and fear did not stop him. I esteemed that about him, about his story, because I felt that fear stopped me from attempting a lot.
Even now, remembering that God did not give me the spirit of fear (timidity) but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind is an on-going renewal.
The trials, all the circumstances, over the past couple of years I liken to those maverick waves. Catching the end of the movie that day, and then having that dream too, was timely symbolism and imagery for me. I’ve felt pounded on by maverick waves of discouragement, dudes–pounded.
So in prayer I asked the Holy Spirit if it was Jesus in the dream.
Tears well up in my eyes as I type because the moment the thought entered my mind, the very nanosecond I asked the Holy Spirit, I already knew.
Yes, it was Jesus in my dream. It was Jesus who gave me the hang ten first too and I simply and instantly responded by giving Him one right back.
I was flooded with remembrances of how moved I was by Chasing Mavericks and of how often the Holy Spirit has led me deeper into the story of Peter out on the water with Jesus.
The Holy Spirit also reminded me of a vision I once had in prayer.
It was July 2013 and I wrote about it in my journal. I was washing dishes and praying in tongues when I closed my eyes and the peace of God flowed out of me.
I could see the ocean and a beach from where I rested in a hammock with Jesus. We were under a cabana with white curtains let loose. Jesus was so tender with me, tracing the contour of my face with His fingertips. I saw a storm roll in over the water and the sky darken and the wind blow so fiercely that a palm tree was uprooted. I told Him what I saw but He told me to just rest with Him–as if He did not want me to worry.
We swayed ever so peacefully in that hammock, embraced–the wind blowing the curtains taut and then slack again.
I asked Him if the storm was personal or about the Body, to which He replied, “It is a storm of circumstance.” And then He told me that this storm would affect the lives of many believers–members of the Body would find themselves going through trying circumstances, but that we could be of good cheer.
Because He has overcome the world.
He told me not to worry and to rest with Him.
Rest in Him.
This is a time for the Body to stand on the water with Him, resting in Him.
Praise God for the Holy Spirit–ever faithful to lead us into all truth and show us things to come! Jesus is so rad to speak to me in word pictures and draw me into the places where I experience His peace. I can hear His still small voice and remember that He is God–remember all I forget when the storm is raging and maverick waves are pounding me.
I had forgotten the detail about a storm of circumstance–and, a storm of circumstance it has been for me and many other Christians I know around me.
I am thankful that Jesus reminds us to rest in Him and that His hands have built us to stand.
I am thankful that we are able to hang ten just like Jesus.