I am sitting on a cliff, worn and weathered. It’s been battered by wave after wave and yet it stands, unchanged. Changed is too fast. It’s been transformed. Slowly. Never gently.
All other oceans I’ve encountered go in, out, again and always. They are gentle, expected, rhythmic. All other oceans are approachable. The Pacific is fierce. I stand on the edge of the cliff, fifteen foot wave daring me to stay where I stand, soaking me when I accept. I have been nervous of what lies in the ocean for years but never before have I feared the ocean itself – the waves, the power, the noise, the intention.
I challenge those who say where the Pacific meets Santa Cruz was created with the purpose to be enjoyed like where the Atlantic meets Emerald Isle and Topsail Island. It was made for the daring. Water sprays over me, I can hear nothing but the crash. It’s overwhelming, shaking through the air, demanding to hold attention. I stand terrified. I have climbed the faces of mountains, wandered the streets of Ukraine, chased trains before I knew what they were and only heard the sound of wheels on track. Yet I stand twenty feet above where wave meets rock. Terrified. In – it slams against the edge. Up – pulsing twenty feet and further. I am nothing to the ocean. Insignificant. I pose no threat.
I don’t think I have ever understood the word awe before, not with the ocean and not with God. I am in awe of the ocean and the ocean regards me as nothing. The ocean is water, force; if I fell, I would be nothing more than a battered body. But the ocean was created. Created by my God. All it took was God’s breath and this ocean in front of me existed.
This ocean that I am nothing to was created by the God who calls me his beloved.
The ocean is powerful. It is stunning. It is fierce and daring, and terrible, yet I am God’s beloved. You and me, we are weak and inadequate, humble and dependent. We are God’s beloved.
How great is our God. I am in awe of who he is. He breathed the most powerful thing I have seen on earth into existence. But with me and with you, he didn’t stop when we were created. He offers everything. He has already given everything to be with us, his beloved. He desires everything, wants everything, asks for everything. His love knows no limits. His power has no bounds. The ocean hits the cliff and runs back, away. God never will. How great is my God. How immense is his power. How endless is his love.