“Watch for low tide,” and “Maintain Momentum” those are the two phrases whispered to my heart as I have settled into life after conference. As I sort out the last of the boxes and make phone calls, it definitely feels like low tide. There is certainly not the busyness, the noise, the activity, the people to talk to. Low tide comes after the activity of high tide, it is when the beach is exposed, when sand is dry and the sun beats down, when the dross of high tide lies open to be examined and the line of low tide is not clearly marked or defined, it remains unseen.
Nobody knows how far the line of the low tide is, until the tide turns. Low tide is as necessary as the high tide is spectacular. The one cannot be sustained without the other.
In life, a low tide usually comes:
- After a time of great victory, or great achievement
- After a season of great vision
- After a time of great valour, bravery or breakthrough.
Low tide is often painful, yet essential. During low tide we battle with the “sand of feelings” that settles on us. Feelings of down-ness; tiredness; sorrow; boredom. We long for high tide, when we felt useful, with things to do. Often the “dross” that is out on our “beach of life”, bothers us. We know it is always there during high tide, when it is hidden with all the activity of the waves. But now, during low tide, all the “sea-weed” and “drift-wood” is out where we can see it again and we are reminded that it needs to be cleared up. We also suddenly notice all the other stuff on our beach of life, things that are neglected, not cleared away, not getting attention while we were busy in high tide.
Most of all, during low tide, when the sun beats down, we find that our spirit (or passion) is dry. I understood the warning now, it is during low tide, that we again need to fall in dependence before the Lord and say “I need the water that You provide, fill me with your Spirit for I am dependent upon You.” It is during this low tide that we go back to the true source of our strength, discover our failed strategies to satisfy our own thirst and drink deeply from the fountain that has no end.
John 6:35 (AMP) Jesus replied, “I am the Bread of Life. He who comes to Me will never be hungry, and he who believes in and cleaves to and trusts in and relies on Me will never thirst any more (at any time).”
If I do not engage in this process of low tide, I will not be ready for the next high tide. Be prepared to go through low tide, look at your program and anticipate low tide and spend the time drinking from your true source of strength.
Without the low tide, we would not be able to understand others that are in their low tide and remind them of the source of living water.
The tide does eventually turn.
“So Lord, what do I need to understand about this low tide period?” I asked. This is what I understand to do during low tide:
- Finish up the activity of high tide, do the filing, the payments, the phone calls. You don’t want the activities of this high tide to interfere with the tide that is coming next. So finish well.
- Put into order your “beach of life.” Tidy up, sort out, stock up. Make the necessary appointments that you have been putting off. Turn over the other areas of your life and sort them out a little.
- Take the pulse on important relationships, how are they doing. Spend time with them. Talk. Have people over. Re-establish and strengthen relationships that are important to you, especially your relationship with your spouse.
- Connect with the new contacts, people you met during high tide, re-connect with them before they forget who you are and move on into their new tides.
- Rest. After work comes the blessing of rest. Do what you really enjoy, that you have not had time for. Nap. Nurture yourself.
- Re-establish good habits. Those that have been neglected while you were busy. Exercise, vitamins and drinking water. Plenty of sleep. Quiet times.
- Manage the urgent. Don’t let other people’s emergencies sweep you off into activity just because you happen to be idle for now. People will find you stuff to do. Think carefully before you commit to anything in low tide.
- Dust off the planner, take a look at what is actually going to happen in the next six months. What do you need to organise, what is going to take time. Where is the extra time going to be in the future? Check if that important event is actually on the calendar.
- Take time to think. Think about where you are, what needs to improve. What God is saying to you. What God is doing around you. What God has already revealed to you. Be careful not to follow your agenda, but God’s agenda. Careful not to build your kingdom, but God’s Kingdom.
- Read, meditate, fast, pray. This is the quiet season. Time to get into the word, meditate on it. Pray and listen. Drinking deeply from the Lord, while He prepares you and your heart, for what is next.
During low tide it is wise for me to spend time in the activity of low tide. This low tide season is necessary for me, to drink deeply from my Lord, to rest, to think and to prepare for the next high tide.
Father, help me to do the responsibilities of low tide, to drink deeply from the fountain of living water, to eat the bread of life that You offer. Help me to enter into rest, to pause, to think and to prepare my heart. Help me not to run off and get busy, but to wait in Your Presence, until You say it is time to move again.
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