Never learned to swim. It has nothing to do with the rhythm of the stroke (Respect to Parliament). It is simply rooted in fear. I’m pretty good and comfortable in a pool whereby I can stand up, but being in an area where I would be challenged to get my footing produces anxiety. I was determined for the fear not to be passed down as a generational inheritance to our daughter. So, I enrolled her in swim lessons early. She was so excited. I watched her with the other parents behind glass. The instructors told me that they began lessons on the deep end of the pool. That was a bit scary, but hey, I was trying not to project my stuff on her. The instructors were fully aware that she couldn’t swim, yet they plunged her into the water. I screamed, but no sound came out. It was if the glass blocked it. As she emerged, with their assistance, she exited the pool crying. I got her dressed and we never returned. The promise was to teach beginners to learn to swim. As far as I was concerned the promise was not kept. Although as desperate as the action to “teach” was, there was no way she could learn to swim without returning to the pool or for the sake of today’s consideration, we cannot get to the promise without the plunge.
Romans 4:20 (The Message) reads, “He plunged into the promise and came up strong, ready for God, sure that God would make good on what he had said.” I was so struck by this concept. I imagined Abraham in the place of the post collegiate plunging into that pool, emerging successfully, ready for more! God made a promise to Abraham, but it was up to Abraham to believe it! Abraham was also the person who offered his child as a sacrifice until God. I on the other hand, chose differently. Our daughter was too young to possibly demonstrate belief, but as her parent, that was my responsibility, even if we’d chosen to go to a different location with a different instructor. I needed to take the appropriate steps toward the promise. I needed to exercise faith despite the circumstances that presented an alternate reality. Since I failed to exercise faith, fear set in, making it even more daunting to convince her that learning to swim would be possible.
Nonetheless, God does His best work in seemingly impossible situations. We somehow forget that we don’t create the promise and so no matter what happens around us or the circumstances that persist, God is not a man, that he should lie; neither the son of man, that he should repent: hath he said, and shall he not do it? or hath he spoken, and shall he not make it good (Numbers 23:19)? Just as God promised Abraham, so He promises us – but it manifests through our faith! We demonstrate our belief in God by our action.
Have you ever watched kids around a pool? When they finally develop the confidence and faith to jump in, they continue to do it over and over again. God desires us to humble ourselves like children to believe Him, plunge into what He’s promised, and do it over and over again.