I love the beach. Every beach I’ve ever been to has been etched into my memory as one of my favorite places. Sometimes the memory revolves around those I was with; other times it revolves around the energy of the crowds that were around us. But most often my favorite and most vivid memories of the beach were the times of utter peace. When I was in college in Jacksonville, FL, I regularly visited a state park just north of the metropolis. I always enjoyed Jax Beach and St Augustine Beach when I could go, but this state park (I think it was Little Talbot Island State Park) was my refuge. I can’t recall every seeing anyone else on the beach when I was there. I would walk and pray for hours on many a afternoon my junior and senior years of college. And my overwhelming feeling when I would leave that wonderful nature preserve was peace. Every. Single. Time.
Which brings me to this picture that I was drawn to today. I have no idea where the beach that is pictured is located on our beautiful planet. But it says peace to me. There could be 100, 000 people behind the photographer, but because all is see is blue sky, turquoise water and smooth sand, I see peace. I find that when I have days of turmoil, I seek photos of empty, sunny beaches. I’ve needed these photos the last few days. The turmoil in our family with Eric having lost his job; the turmoil in our family with having a 15 year old in the house; the turmoil at my job when I’m not perfect and the one thing that gets missed ends up being a big deal; the turmoil with having a college student who is suffering from clinical depression; not to mention the turmoil in our world with politics, perceived threats, true threats, the daily reports of murder, fear and ugliness. These things require that I find peace in something. The pictures of the beach always remind me of my days walking the solitary stretch of sand in Florida. The days of prayer and communing with the Prince of Peace. The One Who is the ONLY source of true peace available. Jesus Christ, my Lord and Savior.