What Do You See?

“What do you see?” It’s a great question when riding along on a catamaran off the coast of Cancun. Normally, the response would be, “Beautiful aqua-blue water and puffy-white clouds…maybe even a dolphin or two.” But that was not the correct answer on this day as my friend sat with a woman she didn’t know. When the raindrops started falling, the rest of the guests had gone for cover leaving the two of them alone on deck. This was a divine appointment—most unexpected. But my friend was taking notice of what Jesus had in mind.

When on vacation, it can be relaxing. Jim and I just got back from North Carolina, and there was little pressure, and a lot of quiet couple time. It was fun to not have a schedule, and see things we had never seen before. We had much the same time when we visited Cancun over ten years ago. We did not go to party, as Cancun can be known for. We were not in the party mood. Our son had recently gone Home to Heaven, and we just longed for quiet time on the beach, in the sun, soaking up the Son. That is what we found. That is not what my friend found. She saw much too much of the party scene, and it was not what she wanted, nor needed. As the days went on, her heart was searching for a filling of God. This is not to say she was not enjoying herself; she surely was. But it reminds me of our pastor talking about visiting the Holy Land recently. After many days of being on the “go,” he was ready to just hole up in his hotel room and be in the Word. Yes, even in the Holy Land, we need to get alone with God.

God knows our every need. And He will take care of us in the most unusual of ways, as my friend found out on the catamaran that day. She had offered to take a picture of a young couple, and when he went off to get a drink, she asked the woman if he was her husband or boyfriend? The woman responded with, “I don’t know what he is.” It seems they had broken up after booking the trip, and decided to make the trip anyway. She said he had made her cry every day so far. My friend said, “I could tell he might be a challenge.” That’s when the woman scooted right up next to her and replied with, “Really? What do you see?” My friend had the eyes and heart of Jesus. She saw a need. And when the rain began to fall, and the rest of the crowd headed for cover, she was able to listen to this young woman’s struggles and encourage her. Even though my friend had her own needs, she still took the time to sit with this woman and be “Jesus” to her. By encouraging another, she, herself, was filled beyond measure. This woman’s problems were not solved on one catamaran ride. No one’s will be. But it will be a moment in time that will be long remembered as a blessing to both women.

When Searching And Noticing the Divine on vacation, sometimes we will see that the highlight may not be a snorkeling trip, or a party scene…it may be in connecting with a stranger—because just as Jesus calmed the storm when in the boat with His disciples, He can be the calming force in hearts still today.

He got up and rebuked the wind and the raging waters; the storm subsided, and all was calm.
Luke 8:24 (NIV)