This summer we did what so many kiwi families do – we packed the car and trailer and headed off to the beach. I realise it’s not everyone’s cup of tea; you usually end up getting fried, sand seems to find its way into everything (and I mean EVERYTHING), there’s the taste of salt in everything that goes in your mouth and when you’ve had enough for the day, you’ve really had enough!
But with all that there’s still something so relaxing about lying on the beach. New Agers call it earthing. Constant exposure to technology – cell phones and computers and the like causes electromagnetic imbalance within our bodies and all that needs to be “earthed” by being in close contact with nature. And who knows, they may even have something here. But aside from that there’s something about lying on the sand or the ground that just feels really good. No TVs blaring in the background or phones ringing in your ear – just the sound of waves pounding on the shore and kids playing in the sand and the warmth of the sun on your back. Delicious. Now if you’re a Christian you get the extra bonus of talking with the One who created it. And that really is special. The Christian enjoys a connection with planet earth through Jesus that is far more superior to what the New Agers experience. That’s just my opinion on that.
Let me tell you about the rest of our holiday.
We were blessed with some awesome accommodation – a quintessential kiwi bach overlooking the beach about 15 min up the road from Whangamata. A couple in our church kindly let us use it (and do this in the middle of January really was kind).
I took this shot early one morning from the deck. A bird made its entrance the millisecond I hit the shutter. But check out the view – serene isn’t it? It was an opportunity too good to miss. I grabbed my bible, headed down to the beach and spent some wonderful time with my Maker. This happened two or three times during the week. When on holiday, spiritual refreshment is just as important (if not more important) than resting the mind and the body.
In the evenings we enjoyed time reading or playing board games with the kids or sometimes going for a walk on the beach. The girls often walked down to the playground and just sat and talked. Katherine and Emma brought a friend each and the four of them made a great team. Looking back we ought to have done that more often. The beach is beautiful in the evenings; quite, calm with the soft cool sand beneath your feet – an altogether different experience than during the day. The evening I took this shot the wind had died right down and a mist from the sea spray was descending over the beach giving it an altogether surreal atmosphere.
That same night Mark went out for a surf. He really loves his surfing and is getting pretty good at it. I got this just as Francelle was going up to chat with him. The evening light was disappearing hence the blurred effect with movement. I’m not expert in photography but I reckon it’s a pretty cool shot. One day I’ll invest in a better camera so I can do more with scenes like this. One day…
All in all it was a wonderful week away and we came back feeling renewed and refreshed. Thank you God for summer holidays with families. And thank you for beaches and beautiful sunsets where we get to behold your glory.