What is it that attracts so many people to head to the shores of oceans, ponds, and lakes during warm weather? Some go to warm climates to escape the cold of winter. More people simply want to spend some time in the summer getting away from their daily routine and head to the beach, either for a day or for an extended vacation.
People find something relaxing and refreshing about sitting on the beach, reading, listening to music, or simply watching the waves lap up on the shore. Perhaps it’s water sports that rejuvenate us. The shore is a place where we can just be and not have to do anything, a place removed from the performance-based lives so many of us live, a place where we can be nourished deep in our soul.
Time at the shore can be a time of reflection and renewal, where we can live, at least for a while, untethered to the electronic devices that demand so much of our attention, where we can pay attention to the important people in our life, where we can ponder the wonder and the power of nature, where we can be refreshed in body and spirit.
Perhaps the call of the ocean is a call to where life on earth originated, like a built-in homing device that exerts its pull on us. St. Augustine speaks of an inner spiritual pull that we experience–a spiritual longing for God, our true origin.
We can experience this pull at any time, no matter where we are, if we pause and open ourself to God’s presence, which leads to true peace of soul and commitment to living in the spirit of God, and where we realize our most authentic self.
“You have made us for yourself, and our hearts are restless, until they can find rest in you.” (St. Augustine)