As some of you may know, my son is a competitive swimmer. Shortly after moving to Southern California he took up surfing. While at college, he spent many hours surfing and my husband and I often wondered if he spent more time surfing than in class, studying or in the pool. He says that when he is surfing he feels peaceful and all his problems seem to just melt away. I guess it puts one in a tranquil state. He once told me that before he enters the water; he get down on his knees to thank God for his blessings and to ask for protection while in the ocean. I am assuming that is because he has had some really close calls and has seen the danger involved in this sport.
There does seem to be a calming feeling when one is close to the water. Something about the ocean brings to mind the vastness of God and his creation. I recently heard about a surf school that was started down in the Orange County area. The school is called Soul Surfing School. Most of us would expect to learn how to paddle out, get into a lineup, how to judge waves, surf etiquette, etc., but Soul Surfing School is different than most.
S S S (Soul Surfing School) teaches students how to ride a wave while learning about Jesus Christ. SSS has been so successful that it has begun spreading the word of Christ through surfing into mission work both in the Socal area and abroad. One of Soul Surfing School's programs is the surf camp it provides -- free of charge -- to all children of Camp Pendleton Marines who are deployed. Chris and Karen Williams are the owners of SSS. Chris said, "It's amazing. We've got 60 kids a week. We're getting more and more opportunities to do more ministries. We want to do more with inner-city kids who need to be taken care of and taught about the Gospel."
But their big events of the year are the trips to Costa Rica and Hawaii. "We get off the plane and get together with the Costa Rican chapter of Christian Surfers, mingle, give 'em some T-shirts and stickers, and then we go to their local break and surf with them," said Chris Williams, who also speaks at schools and other venues for the Fellowship of Christian Athletes. "We point them toward the values of Jesus Christ and talk about loving one another, the Golden Rule, patience and peace, all that good stuff, and it's all cloaked in surfing."
The school offers high-level instruction and in the very near future will take a team to the Christian Surfing Federation's Freedom Surf Series championships in San Clemente.
This is a perfect example of how one can spread the word of Jesus Christ. Show me a beach with a wave, and I'll show you a surf school. It is summer yet?