Spiritual Scuba Diving
Director of Discipleship
Okay, full disclosure—I have never (yet) gone scuba diving. But I am struck by the parallels between scuba diving and being a follower of Jesus trying to live life in the Kingdom of God. In particular, scuba diving relates to the believer’s experience following Christ on this earth in three ways:
First, we must remember that we don’t really belong underwater. As human beings, the underwater world is not our natural habitat. Neither is this world the real home for followers of Jesus. The Bible says that we do not belong to this world (John 15:18-19). We may swim like fish, but we are not fish! In order for us to be able to function in the undersea world, we have to carry air to breath. Likewise, a believer must breathe in the pure oxygen of heaven through prayer, worship, scripture, and other spiritual disciplines in order to maintain connection with God. We must never forget who (and whose) we are and where we ultimately belong.
Second, we need to achieve neutral buoyancy. One of the first lessons scuba divers learn is the importance of achieving neutral buoyancy—that state in which we do not sink like a rock to the bottom or bob helplessly on the surface. Instead, divers wear carefully balanced weights on a belt that allow them to move freely and purposefully through the deep water. The burdens in our life—the trials, cares, and even our weaknesses—actually serve a purpose. They teach us to rely on God, strengthen us spiritually, and produce perseverance (James 1:2-3).
Third, we need to use the buddy system. Divers rely on the buddy system as a safeguard while exploring under water. In this system, one diver continuously monitors another to make sure that they are safe and not in danger. And that diver rests assured that the buddy has his back too! Dangers to watch out for may include out-of-air emergencies, entanglement in ropes or nets, or equipment failures. Diving alone is stupid. Likewise, followers of Jesus are simply not designed to go it alone. God wired us to live and function in the company of other believers who can support and encourage us, and hold us accountable. Other believers are often in a position to spot dangers before we do and to help us. Ephesians 4:9-10 says, “Two people are better off than one, for they can help each other succeed. If one person falls, the other can reach out and help. But someone who falls alone is in real trouble.”
As we approach the summer trimester of Life Groups, please consider signing up to be a part of one of these small groups. This world is not our home, and joining together with other “divers” enables us to successfully and joyfully navigate the waters of life here in the Silicon Valley!