When I was younger I used to think swimming upstream represented a big bear standing at the top of a stream, mouth wide open, eyes darting back and forth, waiting for unsuspecting salmon to jump. With great skill and a quick set of jaws, dinner was caught.
Now that I am older and further along in my walk with the Lord, I think of swimming upstream in a different way. I don’t think about a bear, but rather a school of fish heading in the opposite direction away from me, but more importantly away from God. People I know and don’t know try to encourage me daily to swim in their direction, saying, “it’s easier, faster, more convenient, more fulfilling.” Of course it would be easier to go with the flow, faster and more convenient.
Some days I feel like most of society is swimming away from their creator, God, the maker of heaven and earth. Some days it feels like they are swimming as fast as they can in the opposite direction of the cross.
Jesus said this in Matthew 7:13-14, “Enter through the narrow gate. For wide is the gate and broad is the road that leads to destruction, and many enter through it. But small is the gate and narrow the road that leads to life, and only a few find it.”
Matthew 10:39, “Whoever finds his life will lose it, and whoever loses his life for my sake will find it.”
When I look at the bear picture again in the light of this lesson, the bear represents the enemy and all those fish he catches represent people who have run away from God.
Make sure you are swimming in the right direction – towards the cross. As you are swimming against the crowd, keep your eyes on the cross and remember why you are headed that way .