Kaycee screamed as the riptide knocked her feet out from under her and swept her away from the safety of the shore. She berated herself for swimming alone in an area without a lifeguard. She was a lifeguard, after all, and knew all too well the dangers riptides posed.
Even though she knew better, in her panic Kaycee swam against the current toward shore. Her mind cleared and she remembered what she told swimmers about riptides. "Swim across the current, not against it." It was getting dark, and if she didn't get back to the shore soon, it would be impossible to find.
Concentrating on the task, Kaycee put all her energy into getting out of the riptide. The sky darkened and Kaycee noticed the force that had been pulling at her so hard was gone. Not knowing where the riptide was, she swam out a bit further before stopping to tread water and assess her surroundings.
Dusk turned to night, and Kaycee could know longer see the shore. Her instinct was to swim. Swim anywhere, even though she had lost all sense of direction. Even if she could figure out which way to swim, she didn't want to take the chance of getting caught in a riptide that would take her right back where she was.
Kaycee searched for the source of the sound, but found nothing.
"Be still, My child."
The voice was calm and reassuring. She recalled the stories from her childhood of Peter walking on water and Jesus calming the storm. Kaycee wept as she saw how far she had strayed from the Lord the past few years. She attended church services weekly, but she always felt hollow inside afterwards. They never filled her up like they used to. "I trust You, Lord!"
"Be still, and know I am God."
Kaycee stopped treading water and lay floating on her back. A song she had heard in church that past Sunday ran through her head, and she began singing it softly to keep herself awake.
"When the oceans rise and thunders roar,
I will be with You above the storm,
Father You are King over the flood,
I will be still and know You are God.
I will be still and know You are God.
"Lord, I know I didn't tell anyone where I was going today, but please help someone notice I'm missing. Lead them to my car, the beach, and finally, lead someone to me."
Kaycee passed time by praying, reciting scripture, and singing.
"God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble," she recited.
"The LORD is my rock and my fortress and my deliverer,
My God, my rock, in whom I take refuge;
My shield and the horn of my salvation, my stronghold.
"O come, let us sing for joy to the Lord,
Let us shout joyfully to the rock of our salvation.
Let us come before His presence with thanksgiving,
Let us shout joyfully to Him with psalms.
For the Lord is a great God And a great King above all gods...." Verses she thought she had long forgotten came to her with new freshness and realness.
Songs of hope and comfort filled Kaycee's head. "When peace like a river attendeth thy way...."
Kaycee's skin warmed as the sun rose. She heard what sounded like a helicopter, and strained her eyes to see where it was coming from. "Lord," she began, "I don't know if those people in the helicopter are looking for me, and even if they are, I don't know if they will see me. Lord, it is all in Your hands now, and I pray you would cause someone in that helicopter to look down and see me. Thank You, Lord. Amen."
Kaycee waved her arms and kicked her legs as hard as she could in an attempt to create as much movement as possible. The helicopter crept closer and then hovered above her. A man jumped out with a life preserver and swam toward her. The man reached out and grabbed on to her as the rope raised them both towards the safety of the helicopter.
Her rescuer turned to her. "You look like didn't try to fight at all. You look so calm. How is that possible?"
Kaycee smiled. "The Lord is my light and my salvation; Whom shall I fear? The Lord is the defense of my life; Whom shall I dread?"
Verses and songs in order of appearance:
All verses are from the NASB
Still by Reuben Morgan
It is Well With My Soul by Horatio Spafford
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