Dive In

It was my turn.  All the other family members had taken the plunge in this particular event in our annual Summer Vacation Crazy Olympics. I was happy to be the photographer, reporter, cheerleader….just not the participant.  I don’t mind diving into water (as long as it’s not too cold,) but I wasn’t too sure about diving into the ground.

This “Human Bowling” event entailed taking a plunging slide down the slip-n-slide in order to knock over boxes set up as bowling pins.  I was a bit fearful of getting hurt on the plunge, but mainly hesitant because of the frigid water on the slide.  You see, I like my water comfortably warm, and even then I take my time to meander in so I can “get used to it.”

The more I thought about it, the more difficult it seemed. I hesitated.  I heard the chants of “Nana, Nana, Nana,…” which were partly encouraging and partly annoying.  I didn’t want to let the team down, but couldn’t I just fade into the background this once?  So, as a compromise I ran down beside  the slide with my foot in the water…hoping that would “count.”  Alas, it did not.

So, I took some spiritual lessons from inside my heart.  I’ve been reading the Old Testament of late and these lessons touched my heart.

1 Kings 18:20-21

[20] So Ahab sent word throughout all Israel and assembled the prophets on Mount Carmel. [21] Elijah went before the people and said, “How long will you waver between two opinions? If the Lord is God, follow him; but if Baal is God, follow him.”
But the people said nothing.

Elijah’s question to the crowd…”how long will you waver between two opinions?” was far reaching.  Those who wavered witnessed defeat. Those who followed the Lord wholeheartedly saw God move powerfully.

Numbers 14:24
But because my servant Caleb has a different spirit and follows me wholeheartedly, I will bring him into the land he went to, and his descendants will inherit it.

And this “different spirit” followed Caleb later in his life as we see him in Joshua 14:10-12
“Now then, just as the Lord promised, he has kept me alive for forty-five years since the time he said this to Moses, while Israel moved about in the desert. So here I am today, eighty-five years old! [11] I am still as strong today as the day Moses sent me out; I’m just as vigorous to go out to battle now as I was then. [12] Now give me this hill country that the Lord promised me that day. You yourself heard then that the Anakites were there and their cities were large and fortified, but, the Lord helping me, I will drive them out just as he said.”

So, with inspiration from Elijah and Caleb (and my cheering family) I dove in.  I made a decision to no longer hesitate, waver between two opinions or be a “has been” participant holding back in the “comfort zone.”  It felt like a moment of reckless abandon, but I am grateful I took the plunge.  It wasn’t pretty, but it was fulfilling.

More importantly, may I never hesitate, waver between two opinions, or lose eagerness and passion to keep going and growing in my spiritual walk.

Whatever right decisions you may be “wavering” to act upon, or hesitant to go forward with….Take it from the lesson from Human Bowling.  Just dive on in.  You will be glad you did.

Note:  I have much to share from the family vacation…but am saving a few chapters for a new book coming out in October.  Stay tuned….


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1 Comment

  1. Katherine Pugh

    Proud of you!! Floridians like their water warm, I suppose!


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About Jeanie Shaw

After retiring from forty-five years in full-time ministry, Jeanie Shaw went back to school to earn her master’s and doctorate in spiritual formation and discipleship. She also serves as a certified Christian life coach who loves helping people discover the joy, peace, and purpose that come from finding and following God’s plan for their lives. She has taught classes and workshops all over the world and has written numerous books. She has four grown children, eight grandchildren, and a golden retriever who thinks he is human. When she is not reading, writing, coaching, teaching, or enjoying her family she might be found walking along rivers, learning new lessons about life.

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