Me, my brother Frank and two other guys went kayaking Saturday morning early.   6am.  From my subdivision on Spruce Creek, we  headed toward Ponce Inlet to see the sun rise.  I was the tide guy.  We like to ride the outgoing tide to the inlet area then ride the incoming tide back to the west toward Strickland Bay.  This is a great kayak trip, much to see, much to enjoy .. birds, people, water, fish, …just a great time right near home. 

2 fast quick paddle hours out we reached the inlet and rested.  Rode an outgoing tide and a big wind at our back.  Only problem is that I judged the tides wrong and to top it off, I did not pay attention to the weather…a 20 mile and hour wind from the west… which really helped us get to the inlet quick….but we had to come back through it …..

One of the guys we were with was a smoker and not an experienced kayaker. So what, this is not a judgement on smoking because….well, if I examine my life closely or loosely….. I don’t smoke but there are probably worse things in my life than smoking…. but smoking kills your lung capacity and we were looking at 3 hard hours of coming back against tide and wind (my screw up… I read the tides wrong) and this takes lung capacity and determination.

Almost back, in one of the toughest spots,….tide and wind in a narrow channel with water rushing against us….he quit.  I had thought about it but I had been there before.  You can not qiut at this point.  My brother later said to me…it was the cigarettes.  I did not think about it at the time..  I was just digging, paddling, head down against the water and wind.  This guy quit because he did not have the lung capacity.  He capsized, got on oyster beds, cut himself up and we were 30 minutes behind.

Hebrews  12:1 says let us lay aside every weight that so easily besets us.   This word here means burden.  In this instance….his lung capacity was a burden.  As I saw him struggle….I wondered why… Frank told me later….then I wondered about what were the things that were my cigarettes…  I mean… I don’t smoke …. but what are the things that weigh me down……?  You got any?  It may not be cigarettes….but it may be something else.