It has been a long time since I have felt this powerless, and this time, it’s a beautiful thing. The ocean has always overpowered me. Really, everything that silently roars has.
I spent today (Sunday) at the beach at Hilton Head Island, South Carolina. As I walked along the beach and splashed in the cold waters of the Atlantic, it gave me a quiet strength that starkly contrasted with the hurry and constant pressure of college life. I gathered quietness and serenity as I gathered shells and watched the waves beat upon the shore. I rested my soul and watched others enjoying the beautiful weather too.
As I scoured the shore for shells, I noticed something: a sand dollar; I grew up 30 minutes from the beach and have never found a live sand dollar. A simple joy filled my soul as I watched its little mouth strain the seawater in my hands. I called out to the little girls who were playing near me. They oooohhed and ahhhed as they watched it. As we ran across the sand and shallow lagoons together to show my family and theirs, their excitement was palpable. The joy on their faces as we released the sand dollar back into the ocean was one of my favorite memories of that day.
Once they went back to playing on the beach, my conscience smote me. I had failed them. Though I had hopefully inspired them with a love for nature and the ocean (Go my inner conservationist!), I had failed to tell them of the One who had created the ocean just for them. I said a quiet prayer that I would be able to tell them somehow.
Time passed and I found another sand dollar; this time, a dead one. As I fingered it, I mused as to what a great find this was. I admired what was the skeleton of the deceased sand dollar. The intricacies of every little tooth and line, awed me. How great is our Creator! He overlooks nothing in His grand design! I don’t exactly know what happened next, but it broke. Tragically, it broke. Immediately I was hit with the significance: each moment is very fragile. We must use it to the best of our abilities. Each person, every opportunity, every resource must be treasured, but more than that, it must be protected.
I found the girls again and was very pleased to tell them of their Creator:
“Did you know Jesus made all of this for you and for me? Because He loves us so?”
“No, He made all of this because He loves everyone, a whole lot.”
And so youth teaches age. Sometimes in life, it is when we minister that we are ministered to.
So take the sand dollars in your life, and cherish them.