A Quick word about Dropping In: Experience the Life You Were Meant to Live
I grew up forty-five minutes from the ocean. Most of my summers were spent going to the beach. I would hitch rides with my family, our church youth group, public transportation, or my friends. One afternoon, after my freshman year of college, my best friend and I drove to our favorite beach in North County, outside San Diego.
As usual, we stopped at the Solana Beach Donut House and ate a ridiculous amount of sugar, downed it all with a healthy Mountain Dew, and rushed out of the car to retrieve our boards. At this point in surfing, I was still bodysurfing and bodyboarding. Before I had time to change into my wetsuit, my friend Jim locked my bodyboard in the cab of his truck and gave me his extra surfboard. Jim looked and me and said in no uncertain terms, “Too bad, Shane. No bodyboarding for you this time. Today you are going to stand up.”
I am forever indebted to Jim.
A short time later, I nervously, yet expectantly, sat outside of the breaking surf waiting for a wave. A smaller set of waves approached. I paddled, felt the wave begin to catch me, and jumped to my feet. Though I probably looked like a kook (more on that word later in the book), I felt like I was the best surfer in the world. I rode the wave for perhaps four or five seconds, kicked out, and immediately looked around to see if anyone had seen my wave (unfortunately, no one did).
Dropping in that wave was like nothing I had ever experienced. I was hooked. After several hours of surfing (for me, it was mostly paddling), the sun dipped below the horizon. As I rode my last wave to shore, I felt a strong sense of joy, exhilaration, and contentment. You may have heard the quote: “Only a surfer knows the feeling.”
That feeling is what a surfer refers to as stoke.
Ask a surfer what stoke means and you will likely receive various answers: happiness, fulfillment, pure joy, excitement, fun. In John 10:10, Jesus Christ speaks of what I like to refer to as spiritual stoke. He says, “My purpose is to give them a rich and satisfying life.” In other translations, the word abundant is used to express what Jesus wants to give his children in life.
I love that. Jesus Christ came to the world to give people a rich, abundant, and satisfying life. To be spiritually stoked is to experience the abundance, the richness, and the satisfaction God desires for you. This stoke, whether you consider yourself a surfer or not, is what God wants for you.
We are meant to live with purpose. We are meant to live with connection. We are meant to live with impact. This simple and practical book will show you how. What surfing represents, and many surfers have experienced, is a feeling called “stoke.” It’s that happiness, that thrill and pure joy that comes when you catch and ride that perfect wave.
Believe it or not, God intends for you to have this kind of life. And yet so often we settle for much less. Dropping In will help you open your heart, mind, and soul to the possibility of living differently.
Dropping In is a book about surfing and following Jesus. This is a book about so much more than looking for and dropping in the perfect wave. I trust Dropping In will not just point you to good waves but to the good God who desires to bless you with even more than the joy of surfing.
arrives Jan 7th!
No matter where you are in your spiritual journey, I hope you enjoy reading Dropping In and, more importantly, that it helps you grow in your relationship with the creator of the waves. You will read stories of surfing and how God has used this fun sport to encourage me in different aspects of the Christian life. Prayer, friendship, forgiveness, commitment, and understanding God’s purpose for our lives are just a few of the topics we will address together.
Dropping In means stepping out in faith and obedience, not knowing exactly where the wave will take you, and allowing God to shape and grow you in a relationship with him. Dropping In means taking the words of Jesus seriously, experiencing spiritual stoke, and walking on water with him throughout life. I trust this book will be a resource that helps shape and grow your relationship with Jesus.
You ready? Great. Wax up your board, slap on some sunscreen, start to paddle, jump to your feet, and let’s drop in together.
Thanks for considering Dropping In. Let me know what you think!
Author of Dropping In: Experience the Life You Were Meant to Live