The water was up to her waist and stole air from her lungs. She threw her hands out in front of her like a mime frantically searching for something solid to grasp. Something to support her, to keep her from being swept away. But it was too dark and her hands helplessly fell through the emptiness that surrounded her. She cried out but choked on a sob.
There was no one to help her. She was lost in a dark cavern that was terrifying but strangely familiar, like she’d been here before, like she’d always been here. She could almost hear sneering voices mocking her, welcoming her home. The walls were suddenly alive with red eyes dawn close together silently cheering her torture.
The icy water touched her neck and panic stabbed her heart. She opened her mouth to scream but the sea rushed in as if it were a monstrous hand waiting to clutch her throat. She coughed and spat and thrashed her hands. Her feet were no longer on the floor but suspended, lifted by the circling fluid.
The water reached her eyes and mixed with the tears now falling freely. They surprised her as she didn’t think she had any more to cry. But then it was impossible to distinguish them from the water as her head was finally submerged. Her will to fight, will to live burst forth for one last desperate attempt. She grabbed and punched and watched her screams take the form of bubbles carrying whatever air she had left to the surface.
She tried to follow them as her brain screamed for the life it needed but she was being pulled down. It was slow at first but now faster. She groaned the rest of her air as she felt invisible claws dig into her thighs and pull even faster. It was over. She’d tried her best but failed. It was inevitable. She closed her eyes, or maybe she was just blacking out from the lack of oxygen.
But then something shifted. The cruel water no longer rushed past her. She was an unmoving, hanging blob. She didn’t have the strength to lift her head. She wondered why she was even still thinking. She should be dead.
But then something soft brushed against her cheek and her chin was rising as if attached to a crane.
“It’s okay.” The words were liquid heat and energy. They crashed into her face and penetrated, coursing throughout her entire being. She felt them spark something deep inside, something like a small flame. She parted her eyelids to see an image straight out of her dreams.
A man resonated with light close enough to touch. The skin on his face was pulled over kind and gentle features. His eyes were deep and intense, like she could reach in and touch the entire world at once. His dark hair swayed around him in the ocean that was now somehow living and warm.
Then he smiled at her and unleashed a force that sought the despair of her heart with fiery fury. A storm ensued inside of her as the darkness clutched her, refusing to release the heart it had become so familiar with. She jerked and convulsed with the ebbs and flows of war.
She could feel bursts of joy and stabs of torment as two the two sides battled. But then there was a shift and the torment faded. Then it was gone like a puff of smoke. Her chest was heavy and ragged.
Then a warm hand was on her cheek and her heart leapt without her minds consent. She raised her head to the man and stared into his eyes. But they had changed. They were now like glass reflecting what hung before them.
She stared at the image and felt her heart begin to come undone. Her blemished skin was restored. Lines etched in her face by worry and stress and abuse vanished. Despair and hopelessness had been removed from her eyes. A smile adorned her lips. On her head rested a crown and a bright gown flowed over her body like a shimmering white waterfall.
She blinked at her savior and lover as he rested his forehead against hers. He parted his lips and spoke through the water, “Now breathe.”
Jesse and Kara Birkey
Jesse and Kara Birkey are committed lovers of Jesus who seek to show others the extraordinary life of Jesus is available for everyone. They have authored two books, been featured in films and seek to serve the Lord in whatever ways they can. Follow their blog here.
Bring Jesse and Kara to your venue. Find more information here.
Life Resurrected, Extraordinary Miracles through Ordinary People has been endorsed by Sid Roth and Mark Virkler and is a collection of inspiring stories making it clear that the extraordinary life of Jesus is available to all who love Him. It’s also the testimony of Jesse’s life, the road he travelled bringing him into the arms of Jesus. Get it on Amazon here. View the trailer here.
Marriage What’s the Point? One couple finds meaning in a crazy mess is the story of their marriage—The tragedy and the restoration. They bear their hearts in an attempt to get others to bear theirs and finally receive the freedom they’ve longed for. Get it on Amazon here.
Jesse is also featured in the film DeadRaiser, a movie shining the spotlight on resurrection testimonies across the nation. Find more information here.