Not drowning, not waving,
not floating, not falling,
not sinking, not swimming…
Just treading water.
Going nowhere in particular, but getting life done.
Sometimes it’s calm – and I am relaxed, not worried,
at peace and unhurried.
Sometimes it’s rough – the waves carry me to new parts of the same waters,
and life gets stormy.
But still I go nowhere in particular
and all there is for me
is being all at sea… Making an occasional splash,
safe – if wet! – but without direction.
Have you got a life, boy?!
I look to the shore
and I see a figure… he is familiar…
And I wonder if he is fresh from prayer,
or healing, or teaching, or just being there
for those who have needed his presence.
And he comes – walking on the waves towards me.
Not a vision, not a trick of the light, not a ghost,
but the person I need to see the most –
“Don’t be afraid,” he says. And I have no fear.
“Be brave,” he says. And I take courage.
“Have faith,” he says. And I believe.
And I begin to hope and imagine the impossible…
And he speaks those words that I expect but somehow dread.
He speaks those words that excite and challenge
and promise the miraculous.
I hear his voice…
Not still or small,
not in fire or storm,
but commanding – demanding response:
“Come to me!”
And so I come –
walking on the water.
©David Guest, July 2014 (written during Launde Abbey retreat)