Our family has been to a few of our National Parks, a few more of our state parks, and gobs of local county parks. Each jewel reflected a unique facet of our GodŐs creation. At Walnut Creek, we sat in the cliff dwellings of the Sinagua. That same trip, we climbed the 1000-foot-high black cinder cone known as Sunset Crater. The beauty of the Grand Canyon was breath taking, but at John Pennekamp, we had to carry our breath on our backs in SCUBA tanks for our marine baptism. AmericaŐs first underwater park contains the only living coral reef in the continental United States. About 25 miles long and 3 miles wide, Pennekamp is adjacent to the Florida Keys National Marine Sanctuary. Those two treasures cover about 178 nautical square miles of coral reefs, sea grass beds and mangrove swamps.
While camping in Key Largo, my son and I took a dive boat into Pennekamp. On board were a group of snorkelers, as well. One of the attractions on the reef was the underwater statue of Jesus. As we glided slowly around the reef, I saw one young lady fight hard for the bottom. A few moments later, with her lungs aching, the hope of fresh air was calling her to the surface. With her arms trailing, she shot topside like a Trident missile Đ without looking up. Expecting a life-giving breath any second, what she got was a weight belt buckle to the head. She ploughed into my sonŐs belly as he hovered motionless near the statue. He was surprised; she had the eyes of her heart enlightened rather quickly. Her hope, based on confidence in her own ability, was interrupted by fear. What she thought was a sure thing, sure caused some temporary grief. After a brief struggle, they separated, and she kicked hard, made the last ten feet, and obtained what she so mightily desired.
Paul, in praying that the eyes of our hearts may be enlightened, wants us to remember that our hope is guaranteed, for it is based on the hope of His calling. God chose, at the foundation, to give us the breath of physical life at birth and the breath of spiritual life at our new birth. As saints, we have been given grace and peace and every spiritual blessing in Christ. We were predestined to be adopted as sons; we are redeemed and forgiven, lavished with wisdom and understanding. We have been given insight into the mystery of His will. We have been given the Holy Spirit, who is a deposit guaranteeing our inheritance, and Paul wants us to know that it is a sure thing because God says we are His possession.
Because Jesus lives in us, we are given a guaranteed hope that not only parks us in Heaven but provides us with the desire to know God intimately. May He grant us the ability to fear not and fight hard as we swim down into the depths of our God. It is all for His praise and glory. And, since God inherits us, may we live as captivating jewels to attract others.
M o u n t a i n T i m e M o m e n t
I pray that the eyes of your heart may be enlightened so you may know what is the hope of His calling, what are the glorious riches of His inheritance among the saints,
Ephesians 1:18 HCSB
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