Live Like Sion

mavericks 3

The ocean has claimed its share of ambitious surfers. Some victims learned tough and lasting lessons simply by underestimating its strength. Others spend a lifetime respecting and conquering waves – then one day, by no fault of their own, they paddle out for the last time – forever remembered as one who loved the sea.

Author, Christopher Paolini describes the ocean this way, “The sea is emotion incarnate. It loves, hates, and weeps. It defies all attempts to capture it with words and rejects all shackles. No matter what you say about it, there is always that which you can’t.”

I agree. It’s a consistent force that cannot be tamed – just like the one who created it.

The surfing community is a tight-knit group with connections that span the globe. Anytime a fellow surfer dies the community mourns. Often memorial plaques mark the spot where a life was ended.

One surfer is remembered on the island of Kauai with multiple handmade signs located up and down the small island’s coastline. The sign simply says, LIVE LIKE SION. It obviously does more than memorialize the place where the surfer died – it’s a statement, the summary of a life.

Local Kauai ‘an, Sion Milosky was 35 when he died in CA at the Mavericks big wave surf contest. He was a husband and dad of two small children. Sion’s legacy lives on, through his signage.

I wonder if Sion would think his life was worth following. Would he suggest we live like him in light of his untimely and tragic death?

The handmade signs made by his friends suggest we follow Sion’s example of bravery, fortitude and give-it-your-all lifestyle. I’m challenged to ask myself who I want to live like.

I can’t say I have the kind of courage it takes to crest a fifty foot wall of water on a thin piece of foam to scale down its face at 30-40MPH – all the while hoping it doesn’t come crashing down on me. It’s no wonder there’s only a handful of brave souls who actually do that.

However, I do strive to follow one who did even greater heroic acts. His father left signs encouraging us to do as he did. His signs are written in the indelible ink of his son’s blood. He also lived a shorter than average life – however he willingly took his last wave, giving his life up in order to write the sign, LIVE LIKE ME.

The sea is just one of the many portraits he left of his indescribable, incredible self. No matter how simple our life might seem, how ordinary – just following his signage has rewards – and points to a place of adventure on the untamable sea of his calling.

Can you fathom the mysteries of God? Can you probe the limits of the Almighty? They are higher than the heavens above – deeper than the depths below. They measure longer than the earth and wider than the sea.” Job 11:7-9


11 replies on “Live Like Sion”

  1. I’ve been to Maverick and this great photo doesn’t even do it justice. Another thought provoking post however. Always enjoy reading your musings.

    1. You are too kind, Louis. I receive that as a very high compliment. And I must say, I appreciate the signage you and Ruth Ann are leaving along your path. You’ve ridden some very big waves in the years I’ve been blessed to know you. Thanks for that too.

  2. What is it about the call of the sea that draws us in? I love being quiet by the sea hearing the powerful roar, connecting with The Lord. Its like every wave says I AM. I am grateful I can walk the shores and commune with Him there, some days he just says to me come take a walk, and I find myself by the sea. LIVE LIKE JESUS, I like it, going to print it out and put it on my desk. Love this post, keep sharing what God shows you, it blesses!

    1. “It’s like every wave says, I AM”, what a beautiful picture of his grace and power wrapped together. Thanks for sharing, Kim. I feel like we’re walking the shore together. I love that!

  3. I wept Pat when I read this post! You are definitely called to write. You drew me in and I could feel the power of the sea as I read your inspiring thoughts. God is so personal and beckons us to spend time with him constantly as He reveals Himself in all creation. I too, watch the surfers, praying for their safety each time I walk the cliffs. The courage it took for Jesus to take that last “wave” for us melts my heart. I too, want to live like HIM! Great post Pat as always. This one touched my heart in a deep way. i love the ocean and my almighty God!

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