I caught a faint reflection
of what I thought was me –
I leaned too close and fell right in
The river fast and deep.
The waves’ roar, fierce and hungry,
Clutched with cruel claws;
Tossed me end to end to tip
And throttled with wet jaws.
My orientation left me
In search of space less cold
As wild I struck with hands and feet
To gain a spot to hold.
My nostrils flared, my lungs drank wet,
I thought that I was done –
When whispered in dishevelled ear
“Stand up, the battle’s won!”
‘Stand up?’ I cried, and swallowed gulps
Of water wild with spray.
And tossing hard upon the waves,
I felt my heart give way.
“Stand up!” the stern rebuke rejoined.
For balance, I sought new;
Fighting hard at current’s toss
As foot struck rock, hope grew.
The water, rushing on its way
Was only to my waist;
Although its fury gnashed and writhed
And furiously raced –
Walk through, I could; with effort true
I made it to the sod,
And choking long, and gasping hard,
I gave my thanks to God.
“Fear not, for I have redeemed you; I have called you by name; you are mine. When you pass through the waters, I will be with you; and when you walk through the rivers, they will not sweep over you…” Isaiah 43:1,2 NIV