Let's face it, it's easy to stand fast when the ship of life is sailing smoothly along calm waters, right? Several years ago, my in-laws invited Jason and me to go with them on a Disney Cruise. What a blast we had! We visited the Bahamas, played games on the ship deck until WAY late in the night, and, of course, we ate until we thought we might explode. Everything was perfect. . . until the day the storm hit.
According to those who were more familiar with life at sea, the storm was minor. But to a land lubber like me, it was terrible. I awoke that morning with a horrible headache and a queasy stomach. As I lay in my bed, I felt the boat swaying beneath me, which did little to calm my tumultuous tummy. Jason suggested that getting up and moving about would help. It didn't. How about a bite to eat? Big mistake. From the dining room, I had an up-close view of the sea rising up and down the large, circular window as the boat swayed from side to side. Help me! Finally, we settled on the idea of getting my mind off the storm. We decided to go to one of the ship's movie theaters and watch the Disney movie playing. We didn't even care what it was. This seemed like a good idea until I realized that the movie screen was not attached at the floor, causing the screen to swing from side to side in rhythm with the rocking boat. It wasn't long before I had to exit the theater and find the nearest facilities in a big hurry!
It amazed me how quickly everything could change. For the first few days of the cruise, I couldn't even tell I was on a ship. The ground beneath me felt so solid, and it was easy to stand fast. But once the winds and waves arrived, it was an entirely different story. Isn't that how life is? One day we're sailing along as smoothly as can be, and the next day, the storms hit without warning. Suddenly our perfect little world is tossed about, and we're left struggling to hold on for dear life.
Fortunately, the Bible has equipped us with the tools necessary to stand fast even in the midst of terrible storms. And while we could use many different verses or passages, for the sake of this study, I would like to focus on Acts 27 and share with you the key to standing fast--Sailing the Seven "C's." Lord willing, each day we'll discuss one of the "C's" found in Acts 27 and interpret how these things relate to our own lives and how we can implement this strategy for dealing with the storms that can rock our boat and cause us to lose hope.
If you want to get a head-start on this study, I encourage you to read through the account of Paul's shipwreck in Acts 27, and we'll look at our first of the seven "C's" tomorrow, Lord willing.