Give careful thought to your ways. This includes coffee, kindness, bravery, sunscreen and listening skills.
1. Sand gives coffee texture.
Perhaps placing my cup in the sand on a windy day wasn’t very well thought out.
2. Approach it like you’re 11.
Go in the water. Past your ankles. Past your knees. Go all in. And let the waves take you around. Fight through the initial cold and you’ll get to experience joy. Go on the kayak. Wake up for the sunrise. Wait for the sunset. Run up and down the dock to catch a glimpse of a baby manatee. Allow yourself to be in awe and see small things as big adventures. Explore this life.
3. Reuse, but rinse first.
Wine tastes just as yummy in insulated coffee mugs. But rinse first. (Coffee flavored beer can be amazing… coffee infused white wine? not so much.)
4. Learn about seashells.
That’s it. That’s the lesson. To read about and learn about seashells. And for the record they do not grow on trees; tourists are funny.
5. Be the nice one. Wherever you are.
If you’re the kid or the sibling. The friend or the parent. The guest in line at the bar. If you’re lucky enough to have a lounge chair under an umbrella. When someone accidentally hits you with a stray soccer ball. When the business is understaffed. When they’re out of the food or the drink you wanted. Regardless… be the nice one. Be patient. Say please. Say thank you. Make eye contact and smile. Ask how people are and wait for their response. Make space. Switch seats.
The love of Jesus can be displayed in the simplest of ways that only require you to pay attention and choose to be the nice one.
6. Take off the necklace.
I have a bar necklace that I love. It has the word journey engraved on it. To remind me that being Christian is not a destination, it’s a daily process that requires intention, and attention and patience with others and myself. Apparently this journey should also include more sunscreen. Because I now have a lovely little white rectangle around my neckline where the necklace had been, surrounded by a lovely shade of pink sunburn. Seems that before the trip I should have listened to that song from the 90s about sunscreen. Oh yeah, and actually reapplied sunscreen.
7. Read about it, when you’re in it.
Whenever possible read what God says about the ocean, the sun, the moon, the sand, and the sea when you’re actually there. At the sunrise, the sunset and in between. Each word will feel more powerful. You will have context and an appreciation you didn’t before. It’s easier to drown out the noise in your own head, remember you’re not in control and remember to be in awe of God. That he created everything you see and everything under water that you can’t. In awe that the sun rises every day by his command, not mine. In awe that he created me and you.
Lessons happen in the busy. In the solitude. In the silly. In the office, on the couch, and on the beach.
God created us so he knows what we’re made for, how we work and what’s best for us long term. Study the words he gave us. Listen in all the moments he gives you. Make him the first and last person you ask for guidance. Act accordingly even when it’s hard and human logic is incomplete or the court of public opinion disagrees.
Have you ever thought “If people only knew what I know, they’d make a different choice”?
If you knew, what God knew, you would make a different choice, too.
“Give careful thought to your ways.Haggai 1: 5 & 7