Once when I was a kid I went out on a tiny canoe with a friend into a pond at his house. We had been out playing most of the day and since neither of us had brought swim suits we decided that we should hop in the boat and explore the pond. We paddled out with a single oar to the middle of the murky water. I looked over the edge and felt a deep sense of uneasiness. See, I have this odd fear of water I can’t see through.
I’m not sure when this fear fully developed, but it makes my stomach turn. As I looked over the edge,e trying to hold onto my lunch, I heard a plunk and knew immediately what had happened as I looked up and my friend. The oar had dropped into the water. This wasn’t a plastic oar that would float, but rather a heavy wooden one with a metal handle. Down it went. Somewhere at the bottom of the pond, probably to this day, sits the oar. I wanted to scream, I wanted to cry, I wanted to turn back time to before ever getting into this boat. It looked like we would spend the rest of our young lives on a boat in the middle of a small pond that to my mind seemed like an ocean.
I think sometimes we feel that way with God too. God calls us into obedience. He calls us to trust His plan and to follow Him into the pond. He asks us to trust Him. So what do we do when we feel like we’ve followed God, we’ve obeyed, we’ve trusted, and it seems like we get lost in a void. Our oar has sunk to the bottom and God is silent. We are in limbo. We feel lost and hopeless. We’re stuck out in the middle with no idea how to get to the shore. In the book The Miracle In The Middle by Charlotte Gambill, this idea of the middle is explored.
The middle is where we are able to learn and trust God even when we can’t see Him or understand all of His plan. The middle is where we grow in skills that we will need for the journey forward. The middle is also where we most learn to rely on God. It’s in these moments in the middle that we can either grow the closest to God or run the farthest from Him. When we lean into trusting God in these moments we come out the better for it. We’re able to look back at the hard moments in the middle and see how God was working to grow us.
Sitting out in that boat in the pond we only had once choice. We dove in the water and swam back to shore. My heart pounded through my chest the entire way. I’m sure I thought JAWS was going to come from the deep to eat me alive in this tiny fresh water pond. But, since we were already wet we just laughed and played in the shallows of the pond for the rest of the day. It was the most fun we had all summer. Had we not experience the middle the way we did, the shore would have been far less sweet.
What is it that you need to trust God in? What is the middle moment you’re experiencing? Lean into it. Trust. The shore will come at the best moment possible.
About the Book
Find strength in the struggle, passion to persist, wisdom when you’re weary, and joy for the journey.
If you’ve ever been on a long trip with small children, you’ve no doubt heard “Are we there yet?” Maybe you’ve even said those exact words or felt that same way as you have journeyed with God. Midway is where these feelings of frustration and impatience are most commonly felt. It’s also where our hidden doubts find their voice. Most beginnings start with energy and expectation for all that is ahead, and endings bring the joy of completion as you arrive at your desired destination. But the middle is very different. This midpoint can too quickly become a low point, as energy is lacking and enthusiasm wanes. Yet how well you handle the middle reveals what is in the middle of you.
The disciples found—in the middle of a lake—a revelation of Jesus that they had never seen on the shore. In the middle is where new navigational skills are found. It’s also where some of the most significant lessons are learned. Join Charlotte Gambill in this compelling, story-driven message that uses biblical teaching and life application to show how those who persist through the middle will find that miracles await on the other side.
Links Related to Miracle in the Middle
- Book Website: Miracle in the Middle
- DayStar: Miracle in the Middle
- Author Website: Set Sail, Miracle in the Middle