Our kids aren’t automatically thinking about survival at the pool; they just love the thrill of swimming, splashing, and doing cannonballs.  They particularly enjoy the deep end of the pool.  There, they jump in, get out, and jump in again.  And, again and again.

Survival in life's deep end (never swim alone)

What’s in your deep end? And, what’s your survival plan?

We were recently at the pool without Stephen, who is a much stronger swimmer than I am.  That man has some serious treading skills!

As Avery and Carson headed to the deep end, I reminded them, “You have to be extra careful.  Dad isn’t here.”  Of course, a lifeguard was on duty.  The kids are good swimmers, and they were safe.  But, we as parents are always thinking survival, aren’t we?!  We naturally want to protect what is most important to us—our kids!  Their survival is our top priority.

God is like that with us—His kids.  He cares about us deeply, equips and trains us for survival in the deep end of life, and is always close by ready to help and protect us.  In fact, the question is never whether or not God is with us.  The question is, are we “swimming” alone in life or under the close supervision of our Lifeguard?

Life’s Deep End Can Wear You Out

It has been a “deep end” kind of year for me.  Going back to last summer even, I kept thinking that I would get a break sooner or later, that I would catch up and feel rested.  But that break never came.  One challenge after another occurred.  And, I had to keep jumping in, again and again, to meet and resolve those various challenges.  Thankfully, God was with me the whole way.  After all, I learned long ago the value of never swimming alone in the pool and in life.  I need God—my “Dad”—to watch closely, to keep me safe, and to remind me that my survival is of great importance, my spiritual survival most especially.

What’s in Your Deep End

Have you been enjoying the rest and relaxation of shallow waters lately?  Or, have you needed to exert a lot of energy to deal with your own deep end challenges?  How did you do it?  Did you heed the “never swim alone” survival tip?  Or did you just keep swimming alone?  Maybe you’re in the deep end right now.  How are you doing?  That’s a lot of questions, I know.  All are meant to encourage you to take a step back and examine your own survival efforts of late.

But I’m a Decent Swimmer

You, like me, may be a decent swimmer.  You may think, “Shannon, what are you worried about?  We’re going to be just fine.”  Right.  So far, so good.  I’m hopeful that’ll continue to hold true.  But, as someone who some years ago literally felt the panic of running out of energy in deep water, I have enough healthy fear, or caution, to realize I’m not 100% capable 100% of the time of ensuring my own survival in this life, be that in the deep end of a pool or in the “deep end” challenges that we face as we go along in life.

Survival Rules in the Deep End

The American Red Cross has a great list of swimming safety tips.  The top two tips are: 1) Swim in designated areas supervised by lifeguards, and 2) Always swim with a buddy; do not allow anyone to swim alone.  Those are great survival rules for deep water and in life’s deep end.  They can be the difference in whether or not we live to swim another day, literally and figuratively.

Scripture to live (and swim) by

When you go through deep waters, I will be with you.  When you go through rivers of difficulty, you will not drown. (Isaiah 43:2)


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Scripture references in this article are from the New Living Translation and linked to www.Biblegateway.com.