Daily Encouragement Net
The online Bible teaching ministry of Stephen & Brooksyne Weber
A daily, Bible-based perspective of hope, encouragement and exhortation.

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Tuesday, April 20, 2021

Caution sign at Chatham Beach
Caution sign at Chatham Beach
Click on photo to enlarge

"Dealing With The Rip Currents Of Life"

Message summary: Today when we experience the rip currents of life, however they may manifest themselves, let us like Peter cry out to Jesus, “Lord, save me!”

Listen to this message on your audio player.

“Lord, save me!” (Matthew 14:30)

Chatham is a beautiful seaside town at the southeast corner of Cape Cod. We visited Chatham last Saturday and I had a reminiscing of another visit from about 25 years ago. I was just passing my prime and still felt rather invincible. I was a good swimmer and had my Red Cross certified lifeguard training. I had swam in the ocean several times before and looked forward to swimming in the Atlantic Ocean off Cape Cod on Lighthouse Beach.

Rip current sign
I don't recall seeing the caution sign (our lead photo) or if I did see it I didn't bother to read it. I had heard of rip currents before, which are similar to rip tides and undertows. The first time was as a child off the Pacific coast when we visited California and there were warnings for swimmers. The diagram to the left shows how they work and why they are dangerous.

I went out in the water and after swimming for a few minutes I attempted to swim back in but experienced the rip current and just couldn't get back in. Rather I was being pushed out farther. I was scared but thankfully had the sense to do what you are supposed to do in a rip current; swim parallel to the shore till you are out of it and then the waves assist you in getting back in.

It seems to me we can have experiences in life similar to a rip current. We get in a mess and try as we might we can't get back to shore.

1) In one sense it's just part of the human condition of sin. We are all in or have been in the rip current of sin. Try as we might we can't save ourselves, only Jesus can save! As Fannie Crosby wrote in her hymn "Rescue The Perishing",

Jesus is merciful, Jesus will save.

If you have not done so already we urge you today to cry out for Jesus to save!

"Lord Jesus, I confess that I am a sinner and I cannot save myself from the rip current of sin. I believe that You came to this earth and died on the cross as a substitute for me. I place my faith in You and what You have done for me. I receive You into my life and choose this day to follow and serve You. Thank You for hearing my prayer."

2) But in another sense we can also experience what seems like rip currents after we are saved and following Christ.

a. These rip currents may be strange doctrine. Paul wrote to the Ephesians, that we are to "all reach unity in the faith and in the knowledge of the Son of God and become mature, attaining to the whole measure of the fullness of Christ. Then we will no longer be infants, tossed back and forth by the waves, and blown here and there by every wind of teaching and by the cunning and craftiness of people in their deceitful scheming" (Ephesians 4:14).

b. The rip currents may be those times of trials when we just can't seem to make sense of what's going on and it may feel that we are being pulled farther and farther away from the safe shore. We keep getting plastered by waves. At times like this we need to trust and obey. Peter experienced this:

"Peter, ever enthusiastic and impulsive, replies, 'Lord, if it’s you, tell me to come to you on the water” (Matthew 14:28). The Lord invites Peter to come, and the disciple steps out of the boat. Peter walks on water toward Jesus. His baby steps of faith last only a moment, though, and then he takes his eyes off of the Lord. With his physical sight, Peter sees the wind and waves surrounding him, and “he was afraid” (verse 30) and begins to sink. He cries out, “Lord, save me!” (Matthew 14:30), and Jesus instantly reaches out His hand to catch Peter." * (from gotquestions.org)

Today when we experience the rip currents of life, however they may manifest themselves, let us, like Peter, cry out to Jesus, “Lord, save me!”

Be encouraged today,

Stephen & Brooksyne Weber

Praying man Daily prayer: Father, we cry out, "Lord, save me!" like Peter who called out to Jesus when he was sinking in the water. There are many riptides that come toward us when we least expect it. Guidelines for surviving a riptide require the swimmer not to panic, to keep their feet grounded if possible, and to call out for help from the lifeguard. We too want to apply the same guidelines spiritually when we are caught in the riptides of life; to ground ourselves in Your Word which is timeless; to trust You instead of panicking about our dilemma, and to call on You for help since Scripture tells us "When I am afraid I will trust in You in God whose word I praise." When I place my trust in You, Lord, You save me! I'm so glad I can depend on You. Amen.

Today's Suggested Music and Supplemental Resources

"Rescue The Perishing"  Video  Billy & Cindy Foote

More photos from our trip this last weekend to Cape Cod

Chatham Lighthouse
The Chatham Lighthouse is across from the beach mentioned in today's message.
Click on photo to enlarge

Cape Cod National Seashore
The ocean along the Cape Cod National Seashore with the Coast Guard station in the background.
Click on photo to enlarge

Cape Cod pond
Leaving Cape Cod we passed this scenic pond on Rt. 6a
Click on photo to enlarge

Cape Cod Canal railroad bridge
We always were fascinated with the Cape Cod Canal railroad bridge. At one point a railroad went through Cape Cod all the way to the tip in Provincetown. A portion of that rail line is now rail trail which we had planned to ride on. The rail line is still used from Hyannis to the mainland across this bridge for tourist excursions and for the "trash train" AKA "Energy Train".
Click on photo to enlarge

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Scripture references are from The Holy Bible: New International Version. © 1984 by International Bible Society; NEW AMERICAN STANDARD BIBLE®, Copyright © 1995 by The Lockman Foundation, New King James Version (NKJV) Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson, Inc. and the King James Version.

Personal Mission Statement: "I am created by God to bring Him glory. Through God's Son Jesus Christ I have been redeemed and make it my life's goal to please the Lord. My mission in life is to honor God through my faith and obedience and prepare myself and all whom I may influence for eternity."

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