• Stefan Youngblood

God, Canoes, and Kids

“Hey, would you be interested in taking kids out in canoes next Wednesday for Camp Shalom?” the email read. Sounded like a great idea at the time, so I agreed. After all, where there are kids, there’s God. My first two “passengers” were my friend Ella, and her friend Uwera, both eight years old. I sat in the back, Ella sat in the middle, facing me, (talking the whole time), and her friend Uwera sat in the front… also facing me with her paddle. After pulling out of the dock I noticed I was paddling forward, and Uwera was paddling the opposite direction, against me. (We weren’t really moving too much) I think the two of them tell a picture of how we are with God sometimes. At times facing Him and enjoying the journey, and other times rowing against His direction. (Don’t beat yourself up though. At least you’re in the boat.)

After getting Uwera turned around correctly, they decided they wanted to go under the bridge. Why? Because its fun…and they thought they could probably get me to hit my head on one of the steel beams. (I think that was their fun part)

Afterwards we decided to get really quiet, and just listen. Have you ever noticed how peaceful things get when you take time to stop everything? It was incredibly peaceful. Note to self, take time to stop…and take it all in. Life isn’t all about “getting there.” We miss it if we see heaven as a greater destination than God Himself. 

Out on the lake, the day wasn’t as much about the destination as it was about the journey. We went this direction, then that direction, under some trees, sometimes fast, sometimes slow, but the beauty was in the journey… and our time together. If it were all about “getting there,” we would have never left the dock, because that’s where we finally ended up.

What if God had a ride for you today? Designed to take you under bridges, out in the deep, slowly through the shallows, and occasionally stopping…just to listen? Would you put on your life preserver (not that you’d need one) and jump in? Jesus said “I came that you might have life, and life abundant.” That’s here, not only in heaven. Let’s stop and enjoy the present of His presence. “Become as little children, for the Kingdom of God belongs to such as these.”

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