How lovely the little river is, with its dark changing wavelets! It seems to me like a living companion while I wander along the bank, and listen to its low, placid voice . . .
George Eliot – The Mill on the Floss
I was walking through Truro yesterday, and as I walked across a small footbridge over the River Kenwyn, I paused to look at the water, as I usually do, and it struck me how still the water was. I caught it at that moment when the river flowing down meets the tide coming in. It was a really calm and lovely moment.
I assume that when a river meets the incoming tide there must be a bit of a battle going on as one body of water fights against the other, pushing each other for dominance. There must be a moment though, when the forces are equal and there is stillness, after which the tide begins to recede and the river continues its journey out into the sea.
The thought struck me that sometimes we may feel that we have been pushing against the tide (metaphorically speaking) and fighting what appeared to be a losing battle, feeling as though we are about to give in to such a great and powerful force, but, there comes a time of calm and peace, then the tide turns, the pressure we were pushing against gives way. The river, then, is free to continue its journey. Yes, the tide will come in again, but we know that if we persevere, the time will come when we can flow freely again.