"The ocean... cold and wild the surf, rushing in to overwhelm the beach, the wind, stinging my cheeks, enveloping me in total freedom."
I am not a surfer. In fact, I have never tried the sport. Subjecting myself to the cold, murky Southern California waters contaminated with who-knows-what has never appealed to me. But my husband and our sons love to surf. And I love to watch them.
If you have been to our home, you already know that surfing is a theme inside and out. Surf boards of all sizes adorn our back yard, completing the beachy-tropical look we were going for. Our garage, now used as a game room, is lined with surfboards. Even our porch greets visitors with a patriotic board sitting by the front door. All of these surfboards have a story, some more entertaining than others. But the board that puts a sparkle in my husband Dave's eyes is the one he received as a gift.
For his sixtieth birthday, my family agreed ~ the momentous occasion cried out for a big surprise party. Despite our sneaky, secretive activities during the weeks prior, Dave didn't catch on to our plans. When we headed over to his brother Shaun's (and Sharon's) house under false pretenses, a multitude of faces greeted him with a resounding "HAPPY BIRTHDAY!" He was delighted...speechless...and completely surprised. All of our efforts to give him a memorable night paid off. He was surrounded by our family and some close friends ~ people who mean the most to him.
But the surprise didn't stop there. Waiting on the back patio was a beautiful new surfboard, handpicked by our two oldest sons ~ a present from all who were gathered around him, who knew what a treasured gift this would be. Along with the board was cash for a new wetsuit, something he desperately needed but couldn't bring himself to buy.
The following weekend, our immediate family, along with Shaun and Sharon and their son, accompanied him to the beach. We couldn't wait to see him hitting the waves on his new board. Watching from the shoreline, I could feel his joy as he stood on the board for the first time.
Every time he takes the board out (or even looks at it), he is reminded of the many people who love him and wanted to bless his socks off. He cherishes the surf board, but it's the faces and hearts of the people in his life that matter most. If you ask him, he will say he is rich beyond measure. I have to agree.
"The best surfer out there is the one having the most fun."
"The sea does not reward those who are too anxious, too greedy, or too impatient. One should lie empty, open, choiceless as a beach ~ waiting for a gift from the sea."
~Anne Morrow Lindbergh
"He that will learn to pray, let him go to the sea."
"The sea hath no king but God alone."
~Dante Gabriel Rossetti