As we continue our 3-part blog on “God’s Perspective While Strolling by the Sea,” I love the direction Patti is taking us today in talking about hindrances.
While strolling by the sea it is not uncommon for us to come upon areas clearly marked as sea turtle nests. They are marked, posted and protected. I can’t imagine anyone purposely tromping through the barriers to bring harm to this protected area but unfortunately, we have seen those that are not watching where they are going walk right into this protected area and destroy the foundation of safety that was put into place by caring hands.
Why is so much care given to these sea turtle nests that it is posted with a strong warning and ensuing fines if you neglect to take care with these areas?
If you take some time to discover what it takes for these sea turtle babies to get from their nest on the sand dunes to the beach to the water then you will understand the care given and directed for these areas.
There are several hindrances to these turtle babies from getting successfully to the water. Several are just the nature of placement. It is a long way from protected beach to their water home. Such tiny creatures traveling this far can fall victim to may natural barriers. But it is the human hindrances that have caused me to stop while strolling and pay attention and maybe even glean a lesson or two for my own life. Here are two observations and the lessons I have learned by strolling by the sea and observing the beginning of life of a sea turtle.
One of the things we as beach strollers are directed to watch out for on behalf of these sea turtle babies are holes in the sand. Once the turtle babies begin their journey to the water their path needs to be clear of dangers. Holes in the sand are clear danger areas to these turtles. If they fall in a hole their journey to life in the sea is over. They do not have the strength or ability to climb out and continue. As we stroll, we are mindful to watch for holes in the sand around the sea turtle nests and fill in the holes. We may not have dug the hole, but we can be of help and fill in the hole left by human or creature. We cannot make the journey for the turtle but we can make the journey void of dangers like holes.
The other thing that is a hindrance to the journey to the sea for these turtles is piles of trash. Whether it is a neatly stacked pile of shells from a day of play at the beach or a left behind soda can or bag of paper trash, it eliminates a safe voyage to the sea for the turtles. Just as they cannot climb out of a hole, they cannot go up and over or go around a pile once their journey begins. They are headed straight for the water and need a clear safe passage towards it.
What lessons are in this for us?
This is what I am mindful of for myself and for others that are journeying with me. I love how this verse speaks to me…
Galatians 5:7 “You were running a good race. Who cut in on you to keep you from obeying the truth?”
It is talking about the journey of a race and what can happen when dangers, hindrances and barriers are present.
Just like the path for the sea turtles need to be clear of hindrances, our path needs to be clear of untruths and things that can trip us up on our spiritual journey.
As we go into 2020, stroll along the path that others are walking and help clear their path of untruths that the world may be setting down as barriers and hindrances. Share the gospel message, show Christ’s love in word and deed. Slow down and watch for those holes and piles that may hinder their movement forward.
Let’s walk alongside one another as believers, watching out for hindrances that may slow us down, trip us up or throw roadblocks in our way.
Just as each sea turtle must make their own way to the sea, we must walk our own journey through life. But wouldn’t it be nice if we were a part of making the path clear for another’s journey? Or if we accepted the help of another to make our path clear?
Let’s commit in 2020 to strolling together and clearing the path with God’s Truth and being aware of barriers and hindrances along the way for each other.
Then our journey, just as the journey of the sea turtle, will result in getting us to where we intend on getting: becoming growing and thriving mature believers in Jesus Christ.
I pray this will be a blessing to you this week and into the upcoming year. I pray we will be mindful of the hindrances and barriers that cause us to stumble along the way and let’s be there for each other on this ministry journey!