The cold, icy water splashes inside the small raft, soaking everything you have on. First one wave then the next in rapid-fire. The water blurs your vision as the spray from the rapids smashing against the raft shoot up into your face. You want to laugh, but your heart is beating wildly in your chest, afraid that you are losing control. Your feet tighten inside the straps on the bottom of the raft, trying hard to keep yourself from flying out. Suddenly, the raft dips down and with a hard hit of the water, it is thrust upward into the air. Your feet slip from the straps and you are tossed out, falling and plunging into the water below. The swift-moving current sweeps you down the river, your body turning this way then that. Gasping for air, you flail your arms looking for anything to grab onto. You begin to wonder if you will make it to the smoother waters. Out of nowhere, a hand from above latches onto your life jacket and you are instantly pulled back into the safety of the raft.
Scary stuff right? Maybe you have never been white water rafting, but have you felt like this in life? You start out rolling along and before you know it you feel like you have been thrown into a raft shooting down terrifying rapids. Circumstance after circumstance hits you hard until you can’t see the way clearly. You try to hold on to your faith for dear life, but that one really hard hit makes your feet slip and soon you feel as though you can’t breathe. Your faith has been shaken so you turn, grasping for anything to save you. Maybe it’s other people, alcohol, drugs, food, or even other religions you seek to help, all to no avail. You flounder along the road of life feeling pushed under; drowning. Have you been there? I have. What we can’t see during this time is when the rapids will end and the smooth waters begin, but Jesus can. When we cry out to Him, he is the strong arm that reaches down to grab onto us and pull us to safety. Psalm 34:17 tells us “When the righteous cry for help, the Lord hears and delivers them out of all their troubles.”
When you find yourself shooting the rapids of life, reach for God’s hand. Hold fast to him. He will draw you up out of the waters of destruction, he will pull you from the swift current and set your feet on a rock that will secure your steps (Psalm 40:2). He will bring you safely into the smooth waters. He has promised to be with you, to hang on to you as you cling to Him. His peace is what will carry you through until the rapids cease. These are not just nice words to bring comfort, but they are promises. They are promises that God gives his children. If He promises it, He will be faithful to accomplish it. What you must do is stand firm in your faith, believe God’s Word, and hold fast to Jesus. These are your action steps in the midst of difficulties.