More lessons from the lake: in and out

Ever think the way you got into a situation is the same way you’ll get out?

Me too.

While Heather and I were at the lake yesterday, we watched as the father and son mentioned here introduced two beautiful dogs (a border collie and an Australian shepherd) to the lake.  The dogs, Charlie and his buddy (whose name I can’t remember), had been rescued from the pound recently, and their new owners wanted them to be familiar with the water.

Charlie was happy to watch as his buddy was set in the water and guided to shore.  He cheerfully met him at the shore.  Charlie was not so happy to be lifted into the water himself.

Despite the carefully guidance of his owner, Charlie simply slapped at the water for a bit.  Then, he tried and tried to climb back onto the dock-from whence he came.  The dock was too high for him to make it back up, at least without great struggle.  His owner kept him in the water, leading him to shore.  The water wasn’t deep; Charlie could probably have walked a good deal of the distance.  Still, he kept trying to climb out of the lake and onto the dock.

We watched from the end of the dock, and Charlie made it to land. Soon, water droplets flew as he shook off the lake water as if it were poison.  The whole thing couldn’t have taken more than about 30 seconds, but it felt like longer as the poor dog wrestled with gravity and his owner.

I thought of how often I do the same thing- either get into a situation by no choice of my own, or sometimes, just see it coming- and wonder, panicked, how I’m going to get out.  Any relative harmlessness of such is irrelevant; I just want to get out!  Most frequently, I try to get out the same way I got in and get frustrated when it doesn’t work.  The guiding hand of my Father may remain unseen as I simply slap at the water and grasp for the dock.

So tonight, in the comfort of a basement and having enjoyed a swim this evening, I’m looking…looking for the hand of my Guide and Comforter, the wisdom from above, and the unexpected exits provided in the past.  I’m also praying for a deeper trust and eyes to see beyond my limited experience in the future.


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