Reflections by the Sea: The ocean

Published 6:48 am Thursday, November 17, 2022

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By Betsy Ore Glass

Great is the Lord and most worthy of praise; his greatness no one can fathom. – Psalm 145:3 NIV.

The ocean has a hold on me. It is so powerful. I have a large amount of respect for what it can do when unleashed. The waves that pound the shore in rhythmic fashion remind me of a strong heartbeat … some days beating faster than others. Going to sit by the edge of the ocean makes everything better. It is as if the waves wash over me and cleanse my soul in quietude and refreshes my mind at the same time. The ocean breathes its salt air on me and I feel wrapped in a blanket of calm. I can think better and there is clarity. For years I have wondered what was the real secret of the ocean … is it the salt air, the breezes, the serenity, the sound of the waves? I suppose it adds up to all those things. Water has a calming effect on so many of us. To each their own. Some people need to fish, while others surf the waves. Photographers need to capture the perfect sunrise while people like me are content to drive to the pier and feed the hungry gulls some pieces of bread. We are all unique but unified in the fact that many of us hunger for the ocean in some way or another. And we all agree on one thing: the ocean is a force that deserves our honor and respect.

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God is most worthy of our praise, honor and respect as well. Yet, I don’t think He gets His due. The busyness of our schedules and our fast and furious lives leaves little time for Him. Our mind is where our heart is … or is it the other way around? I think both ways apply. God seems to get the leftovers at times. “Oh I’ll get to God after everything else is done and I can relax and really focus” …  haven’t we all said that? We can pray or talk to God anywhere … driving in the car, vacuuming the floor, pulling weeds, walking the beach. We are told to pray continually (I Thess. 5: 17). Sometimes my talking to God turns into prayer and then back to talking again … I don’t really know the difference. He deserves to be exalted in our lives. And to be appreciated and for us to allow Him to guide us in His Way and His Will. God’s power and mightiness are so much greater than anything we can imagine. While our footprints along the ocean’s edge may get washed away with the tide, our memories of our time with God will be forever written in Heaven and our heart.

Betsy Ore Glass has long-standing ties to the Outer Banks. From Virginia Beach, her family bought a vacation cottage in the 60s and her love of the area began. Later in the 90s, Betsy and her husband bought a weekend cottage and introduced the area to their children. Then Betsy’s parents retired to KDH where the family gathered often. Reach her at To learn more about her book, Reflections by the Sea, visit