Beneath The Surface

And God said, ‘Let the waters swarm with swarms of living creatures, and let birds fly above the earth across the expanse of the heavens.’ So God created the great sea creatures and every living creature that moves, with which the waters swarm, according to their kinds, and every winged bird according to its kind. And God saw that it was good.” “Lord, how manifold are your works! In wisdom have you made them all; the earth is full of your creatures. Here is the sea, great and wide, which teems with creatures innumerable, living things both small and great.” Genesis 1:20-21; Psalm 104:24-25

It is true that in snorkeling, the slower I go and the longer I look, the more I see….and marvel. I never want it to end. The Great Barrier Reef is indescribably magnificent, its coral variety endless: large mounds patterned like brains and mazes and Greek key designs and sometimes blanketed with royal blue or purple, fan-like shelves, wavy tulips, sueded and chenille ruffles, orangey spikes, antlers white-tipped with ‘blossoms,’ salmony mounds with fingers, pink mounds with blooms, reddish smooth ‘shields’ with raised ‘hieroglyphics,’ domes that seem armored with scales, tubes with deep purple-blue centers, all sizes and shapes, from seemingly centuries-old to fresh new growth like pale green buds and sprays on a tree. Zig-zagged clam shells partly opened, nestled into the coral in all stages of age, are painted with fluorescent purple or yellow flecks on black. Ah, Lord, in wisdom You have made them all! This underworld, unseen by all but a few, is filled with splendid beauty, form and color beyond compare!

And the fish! Long narrow goldish trumpet fish with noses like blunt butter knives, black and white striped “sugarlips” with bright yellow mini-wings and thick yellow lips like clown paint, wispy yellow black and white designer-dressed angel fish that swim in pairs, swarms of skinny green pointed ovals, orange and white clown fish, schools of neon blue damselfish with a single black dot, elegant fluorescent yellow-with-red-stripes butterfly fish, greenish blue parrotfish with pink ‘beaks’ that chew loudly on coral, electric blue and black surgeonfish with yellow tails, lumbering humphead blue-green Wrasse with thick lips, sneaky dark barracuda, plodding heavy grey-camoflauged grouper, coral pink trout with blue dots, sand-colored rays with periwinkle painted spots, and bright blue feathery worms with silver and white antennae that bore into coral…. Majestic hues, movement, glory beyond description! Indeed, manifold and good are God’s works!

So in life, much is missed when we hurry and drive and skim the surface. Slowing down, diving deep in the Word, stopping to contemplate, watch, and listen is what brings the greatest insight into God’s character and ways. He has prepared a feast for our senses and soul; we need partake.

Mighty and marvelous Creator, drive me deep beneath the surface of life, away from the madding world, to plumb the depths of You and Your will. Pace me to linger with You, to gaze, to ponder, to meditate on facets of You I would otherwise overlook. You are worth my attention, and my praise.

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