This week Michael and I went on a boat trip from Tampa to Marco Island. On the trip down, we had 5 hours of relatively calm seas (for a 26+ ft boat on the Gulf) and then over an hour of really awful 3-5 ft seas just past Sanibel Island as we cut over the last little bit to Marco. During that last bit as we were tossed up and down, pounding from wave to wave, I was in the passenger seat, inwardly praying for God to reach down and calm the seas.
As we were pounded, I observed Michael who struggled to keep control as the waves crashed over the front of the boat into our faces. He was able to hold on to the steering wheel which, coupled with using his legs as shock absorbers, gave him a little stability.
Watching him reminded me of people who know about God and who pray but only during hard times. Oh God, if only you will get me out of this I will never again......
While Michael was tossed about, it was not with the devastating impact that was hitting me. I had absolutely nothing to hold onto to steady the course. All I could do was hope that Regal did a good job in stress testing the hull of the boat when they built it and made a mental note to send them a note about adding a strap to the side of the passenger seat so you can hold on in rough seas.
I thought how awful it would be to not believe in a God who would get us safely to our destination. It would be just like not having anything to hold on to when the real storms of life confront us and toss us about.
Off in the distance I saw a passenger sightseeting boat, a small cruise ship. The people on board, while likely experiencing some rolling back and forth were steady in their sailing, as they were grounded in a much heavier boat that plodded on [rapidly compared to us, as it often felt like we were moving backward].
That grounding is like being firm in the arms of God, knowing that He will get you to your destination and not being tossed about, even though the same seas were confronting the bigger boat.
Psalm 36 talks about the refuge that we can find in the shadow of His wings:
5 Your love, O LORD, reaches to the heavens,
your faithfulness to the skies.
6 Your righteousness is like the mighty mountains,
your justice like the great deep.
O LORD, you preserve both man and beast.
7 How priceless is your unfailing love!
Both high and low among men
find refuge in the shadow of your wings.
8 They feast on the abundance of your house;
you give them drink from your river of delights.
9 For with you is the fountain of life;
in your light we see light.
10 Continue your love to those who know you,
your righteousness to the upright in heart.
Thank you for your unconditional love and for your abundance Lord.
I give today to you and sit in the shadow of your wings, eagerly awaiting what you have for me today. I am yours and I'm pressing into you Lord. Protect me from the high seas.