This week's Living Water from @christiansurfersunitedstates .
WORSHIP… by JW Kaiser
When I was young, I didn't care much for going to church. I grew up in a “high church” tradition where there were lots of candles and organ music. I couldn’t stand it. I didn’t know how to sing and most of the songs had words I didn’t understand. I just moved my mouth pretending to sing, while day dreaming about surfing.
Later when I was a teenager and was starting to really care about my faith, I felt guilty that I still didn’t like to sing. Somehow I was under the impression that worship was only singing and I knew that worship was an important part of my growing faith.
I’ve come to learn that we can worship God by doing more than just singing in church. In fact, God is glorified when we are living out our worship in the day-to-day things of life. Do you wash dishes? Do it as unto the Lord and it becomes worship. Need to study for a final exam? Do it with excellence and enthusiasm and it could glorify The Lord. Do you have to do something at work you aren’t excited about doing? Do it well and feel God’s pleasure in you. So how about surfing? Can we surf as an act of worship? The simple answer is yes. Of course surfing can be an idol that pulls us away from worshiping God. However, it can also be something that makes God smile upon us. When you surf do you feel God’s pleasure? Try this simple act next time you go surfing. Stop by the waters edge and know that He loves you more than the number of grains of sand on the beach. Say a prayer and paddle out and know that only He can calm the storms of life. Push under the first wave of a set and remember your baptism into the faith. Sit out back and practice being patient for the blessings of God. When that perfect wave comes, remember that it is Jesus Christ who is the only perfect sacrifice to save us and show us God’s love. This is why Jesus is the One we worship. “Therefore, I urge you, brothers and sisters, in few of God’s mercy, to offer your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and pleasing to God – this is your true and proper worship.” Romans 12:1 “Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart
This week's Living Water from
SHAPED by JW Kaiser
Have you ever shaped a board? It’s much harder that you think it will be. I tried it one time. What I created wasn’t surfable. What I shaped wouldn’t have even looked good hanging on a wall. What I shaped wasn’t worth the materiel cost. The process taught me what I already thought to be true; good surfboard shapers are gifted, appreciated and worth their weight in resin and foam.
How do they do it? They basically start with a foam blank and then carve, cut and shave away everything that doesn’t look like the surfboard they intend to create.
This process is what God is doing with us. God is carving away everything that doesn’t look like what he intends for his masterpiece. Yes, you are an intended masterpiece and the “shaping” process you are undergoing will take some time and might not be so comfortable.
Would a block of foam cry out if it could while the shaper uses the plainer or while it is being sanded down? Maybe. At times the process that God is using to shape us is painful. None of us enjoy having to be patient or being told no. None of us like heart-break and disappointment. In essence, the tools God uses to shape us are at times not comfortable. However, we must trust these tools in the hands of a all knowing, all loving, completely sovereign God who treats us like beloved children rather than a block of foam to be carved up. Our pain and struggles with this process hurt his heart too (as it would any good father), but he knows the ultimate outcome of our ongoing design. If we submit to this process, we will become more like Jesus and more aware of the Father’s great love and plans for us… becoming his beloved masterpieces. "And I am certain that God, who began the good work within you, will continue his work until it is finally finished on the day when Jesus returns." Phil 1:6
This week’s Living Water from @christiansurfersunitedstates
Mysteries of Faith and Sea - by JW Kaiser
Where do good waves come from? The quick answer is wind from storms from far away. But how does that even work? Seems hard to fathom how a storm off of Africa or Antarctica could make their way across great oceans to come slamming to a stop on our reefs or sandbars. As I’ve gotten older, I’ve enjoyed the mysteries of the sea even more. Reflecting on the mysteries of anything significant is a good exercise in a world were everything is instant this or fast that. Surely it is a technical wonder that my silly gif of a baby dancing canmake it from my phone to space and back to down to a friend’s phone in a second or two. The world is full of mysteries… but most can be explained.
Faith is one of the last great mysteries that cannot be explained. Even as you read this devotional, your brain is trying to make sense of faith and God’s great love for us because we live in a world where there is cause and effect and no room for the beauty of mystery.
AW Tozer said in prayer to God, “If nothing in me can win Your love, nothing in the universe can prevent You from loving me. Your love is uncaused and underserved. You are Yourself the reason for the love wherewith I am loved.” (Knowledge of the Holy)
Paul writes, “We declare God's wisdom, a mystery that has been hidden and that God destined for our glory before time began.” 1 Cor. 2:7
God’s wisdom and truth are grander than all the oceans combined! As too are the mysteries that come from faith in such a loving and sacrificial God. It would be easier to believe that God needed something from us in return for his love. Just as there is no coin slot and button to push at the beach that can conjure up a wave from across the ocean, there is no favor to win from Jesus Christ… only grace and mercy which are as boundless as the seas!
Ustedes son como una luz que ilumina a todos. Son como una ciudad construida en la parte más alta de un cerro y que todos pueden ver. Nadie enciende una lámpara para meterla debajo de un cajón. Todo lo contrario: la pone en un lugar alto para que alumbre a todos los que están en la casa. De la misma manera, la conducta de ustedes debe ser como una luz que ilumine y muestre cómo se obedece a Dios. Hagan buenas acciones. Así los demás las verán y alabarán a Dios, el Padre de ustedes que está en el cielo.
San Mateo 5:14-16 TLA
This week’s Living Water from @christiansurfersunitedstates
RECREATED by JW Kaiser
Have you even broken a board? There are actually many ways to break a board. A small ding can take on water and eventually ruin the board just as bad as if you had split it in half. A friend of mind put his brand new board in the back of a pick up truck bed and then saw it flying off into four lanes of traffic over a giant bridge. I never heard how that one turned out, but there is no way it had a happy ending. Most broken board stories don’t have a happy ending either. Even if a board is recovered and fixed, it certainly is never the same as the day it left the shaper’s factory.
It would seem we have a lot in common with a broken surfboard. We were created with love for a great purpose; designed to be flawless. However, things happen. The world and our own actions turn against our divine purpose. We are broken. Just like a surfboard with one small ding or crack, we aren’t the perfect work of art we were created to be. Or are we?
Our story is different than that of my friend’s surfboard flying off the bridge and the many boards that are broken every year. Our story doesn’t have to end at brokenness. Our heavenly Father calls us to give our sin and brokenness to him. He says that “If we are in Christ, we are a new creation. The old is gone and the new has come.” - 2 Cor. 5:17 Did you catch that? We have to be “in” Christ. Envision giving all your broken pieces to a God that loves us and placing them “in” his mighty hands. When we are “in” Christ our brokenness is made new because of the work of Christ on the cross. God doesn’t fix us. That is what the world tries to do. Fix us. We don’t need fixing. We don’t need just a good ding repair job. We need to be re-created. Only our creator can re-create us to be new.
So, next time you break a board, even just a little, let it be a reminder that God is not just a creator, He is a re-creator. The miracle of faith is that in Christ, we are not fixed, but made new. 📷: @boardroomshow
Who’s excited for our 2018 International Gathering in Hossegor after what we saw last week?!? We certainly are! Full details coming soon but September in France is sounding pretty great to us right now... #christiansurfers#ourfamilyonmission 📷 @wsl / Damien Poullenot
All we can say is WOW! So incredible to see Jesus-loving surfers from around the USA gather together for their first cross paddle-out at their first National Conference in a decade! #christiansurfers#ourfamilyonmission