When Danger Lurks Beneath


Tragedy struck again this summer along our local river. Two teenaged boys drowned.

I won’t try to recount the details because I really don’t know them. I just know that the river’s currents are notoriously dangerous in a certain area and several have drowned as a result over the years.

I haven’t gone to this unforgiving section of the river to see for myself, but I’ve heard that it can look calm and appealing, that it can look safe. But beneath the surface the currents wait to grab anyone unlucky enough or unwise enough to tangle with them. These currents won’t let go. They bring death. They bring sorrow.

Some of the victims have acted carelessly and not taken warnings seriously. Others have bravely risked—and lost—their lives while trying to save another. And still others found themselves at the mercy of the currents purely by accident, from a fall or from being unfamiliar with the area. 

Today we may not be planning to test a dangerous river, but some of us may be entering life situations where an activity or an attitude or a relationship looks appealing, where on the surface it looks harmless. We might think it’s no big deal. It’s okay. It’s safe.

Let’s be wise. Let’s watch for caution signs. Let’s heed warnings of those who have traveled the road before us. Let’s educate ourselves before heading into unfamiliar territory.

We must remember that danger may be lurking beneath. Let’s not tangle with currents that are sure to grab us and not let us go until they wreak havoc—until they bring sorrow or even death. Let’s be on guard.

“So, if you think you are standing firm, be careful that you don’t fall!” 1 Corinthians 10:12

*What can we do to stay alert to dangers?

*Flickr photo by Mohammed Alnaser (he has some amazing photos of African wildlife on his page)

*Don’t miss out on the “Back At It” Giveaway. Deadline to enter is 6 p.m. Aug. 28. Details are in my Aug. 15 post.


  1. Staying alert to dangers? Well, I daily pray for God’s Spirit to keep me aware of my surroundings and possible dangers (both exterior and interior ones). I don’t want to grow complacent in my daily doings. We live in a lovely neighborhood, filled with many pools of water and wildlife. It really is beautiful, but I’m always on alert for possible dangers (like snakes!).

    • Snakes have been a problem since the beginning of time, haven’t they? Hope you can avoid them there in your neighborhood, Elaine. Just goes to show that snakes can be lurking right smack-dab in the middle of beauty, too, huh?

  2. Staying alert to dangers is not always easy, but I think one of the greatest ways we can do so is by heeding the warnings and lessons of those who have gone before us. I often think of how much I thought I knew and understood when I was in my twenties, but now, after another twenty years of living, I have come to realize how little I know, and how many risks I took when I was younger. With age I have learned to listen and fully understand how much I can learn from others.
    My sympathies go out to all families who have lost loved ones through tragic accidents like you described in this post.

    • I agree, Mairead. Heeding the warnings of those who have gone before us helps in so many spheres of life. I’m still learning! (Thanks for mentioning those who are grieving. Can’t imagine living through such a tragedy…)

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