A few summers ago, we were wonderfully blessed to be able to build a pool in our backyard. Yesterday morning after spending nearly an hour in the Transformation Room, aka the bathroom where I attempt to make myself presentable, I emerged to peer outside and notice that the patio furniture covers had blown off of the chairs overnight. Since it was set to rain, I went outside to find the covers and put them back on. At that point I realized that one of our chaise lounges had completely vanished: chair, pad and cover! I looked around quizzically and then something at the bottom of the pool caught my eye: there standing up on end as if it had wheeled itself across the diving board and taken a plunge, stood our chaise lounger with the cover still securely intact.
Next to it, another chair cover was sprawled out over both drains with our pool vacuum unsucessfully attempting to suck it up out of the way. I was afraid the vacuum would be broken after trying to inhale such a heavy item and that our pool would quickly turn from blue to green without the drain being able to function. Well, being a new pool owner, I wasn’t sure exactly what to do about this.
I had several options. I could forfeit the previous hour in the Transformation Room and dive in, but there was no guarantee I would be strong enough to remove the chair and cover from the depths of the pool. I could try to fish out the furniture cover, but I didn’t have anything long enough to reach the 13 plus feet to the bottom of the pool. I couldn’t call my husband, because I knew he was unavailable that morning to be reached by phone, but I concluded that, being a seasoned pool owner, he would surely know what to do!
I walked back in the house to go down to my office with the pool debacle still stirring in the back of my mind. As I pondered what my husband would do to fix it, the Lord began to whisper in my spirit: Don’t miss this word picture I am painting for you.
See, I have someone dear to my heart who has fallen into deep water. With every one of my instincts, I want to jump in and pull her out myself. Not just for her sake alone, either, but because I can see the residual effects of her staying there. Just like my sunken pool cover and chaise could lead to a broken pool, my sister treading in deep water will lead not only to her own exhaustion and despair, it will cause others to fall in with her.
I have been on my face before the Lord in prayer about this and God continues to lay His hand on me and tell me to be still. This is hard for me and I have begged the Lord to teach me something of Himself and of myself during this time. By showing me those sunken items in my pool, He brought to mind several things.
1. Just like I needed to wait for my husband’s strength and counsel before attempting to rescue my chair and fix my pool, we too, often need to allow truth to override our instincts and wait for another’s aid before diving in.
2. When I search the scriptures, more often than not, God doesn’t send His servants into deep waters alone. Moses had Aaron, Joshua had Caleb, Elijah had Elisha, David had Samuel, Paul had Barnabus, Silas, John Mark and Timothy, and even Jesus sent his 72 messengers out in pairs (Luke 10). When we feel the battlefield is calling, we would be wise to ask the Lord to send a partner to share the burden. If there seems to be no one else whom God is calling to dive in, we should sit back and ask the Lord why.
3. When God is waiting to rescue His children and there are no human agents He is raising up, we can be sure that He has a reason behind it. In Isaiah 59: 15-17, God says that He Himself will intervene. Who better to come to our rescue than the Almighty?
4. We cannot judge our own spirituality by how effective the rescue turned out. When Jesus sent out His 72 messengers they returned with great joy because they had witnessed great victory over the kingdom of darkness. However, Jesus rebuked them for this. He told them not to focus on what God had done, but rather to focus on Who God Is and the fact that they belonged to Him.
5. We cannot ever underestimate the power of prayer. Now, I did not pray for my pool, but I can assure you that I am praying for my sister. God commands us to pray (Ephesians 5:17), promises us that He will show us how to pray (Romans 8:27), and assures us that our prayers hold power beyond our wildest imaginations (James 5:16-17). We often say as Christians, “well, I guess all I can do is pray”. What we ought to say is, “well, I’m doing the most effective thing I can possibly do: I’m praying; earnestly, diligently and full of faith”.
After a couple of hours of working in my office and allowing the Lord to bring to mind His ways He has taught me through His marvelous Word, I walked back down the hall to the kitchen to grab some water. As I passed by the window, I looked back outside at my pool smiling. Immediately I halted in shock. There sat my pool cover, my chaise lounge, pad and cover all on my patio! I ran outside to take a closer look shaking my head at God’s sense of humor. They had been rescued from the depths of the pool and my vacuum was back on, whirling around, faithfully doing it’s job.
God had sent the Pool Man.
I have no doubt my sister will be rescued. I have no doubt that God knows exactly where she is and His own arm will work her salvation (Isaiah 59:17). And while I wait and watch, I will pray. I will remember Who God Is and I will rejoice that our names are written in the book of heaven.