My husband and I walked hand in hand, away from the shoreline and down Jennette’s Pier in Nags Head, North Carolina, my eyes growing wider with every step we took. The meteorologist on the morning news had warned us that Hurricane Michael was quickly approaching the Outer Banks islands, and the winds had picked up to at least 30 miles per hour.
I squeezed my man’s hand and leaned in close as the pier’s wind turbines whipped and squeaked at rapid intervals above our heads. To my left and right, the waves raged and swirled whitecaps at every angle, creating along with the wind a symphony of chaos and sound. Come midnight, Michael would hit the pier with all of its force and fury, about a month after Florence had threatened to take the islands out.
We reached the end of the pier and I stopped and stared out into the distance, marveling at the magnitude and beauty of the Atlantic stretched out before me.
How wide, how long, how high, and how deep my love is for you, daughter.
The wind and waves should have drowned out any other sound from making its way into my brain, but these words echoed crisply in my mind.
Yes, His love is stronger, wider, longer, higher and deeper than any pier, ocean or hurricane.
God’s Love Will Carry Us
I’ve spent a great deal of my life caught in what I like to call the undertow of doubt, fear and despair. When the waves of chronic pain, depression and anxiety came crashing over my head, I didn’t know how to overcome them, and so I closed myself off from receiving God’s love and believing things would get better. I heard people say His love was strong enough to save me, but after years of battling the same issues and seeing little to no progress, I had hardened my heart to the truth.
I can’t pinpoint the moment when God’s love finally broke through my incomprehension. It’s not as if I woke up one morning and instantly felt God’s love. Instead, much like my unraveling, recognizing and accepting God’s love was a process.
The more I prayed for God to reveal and help me feel His love, the more He showed up in the most amazing ways to woo me back to Him.
There’s not enough space here for me to tell you the many ways God’s love has carried me through the high sea battles I’ve faced over the years, but I will tell you this: the depths of His great love saved and continue to save me from sinking into the undertow of doubt, fear and despair every single day.
I don’t know what high sea battles you are facing today, but I do know that His love can and will carry you too. All it takes is a little courage and a tiny seed of faith that’s willing to say, “OK, God, I can’t face this storm alone, but I’m trusting You and Your love to carry me through to the other side.”
May we all have the power, together with all the Lord’s holy people, to grasp how wide and long and high and deep is the love of Christ today and every day (Ephesians 3:18). And may we declare, right here and now, that the only thing we are going to drown in in this life is God’s deep love — not the deep waters that surround us.
Say it with me: Jesus, I need your love.
Want to learn more about God’s deep love and go deeper in your faith? Read my new book, Into the Deep: Diving into a Life of Courageous Faith.