The waves are crashing in, the boat is rocking and rolling, and the hull is creaking under the beating of the waves. What now?
In this week’s sermon we go through chapter 27 of the book of Acts which describes Paul being transported from Caesarea to stand trial before Caesar in Rome. He is a prisoner, being transported with other prisoners on an Egyptian grain ship, without rights or privileges, and with a potential life sentence (or worse) awaiting him at the end of his trial. Yet he remains hopeful.
The ship sets sail from Crete to Malta (over 400 mile journey), and Paul issues a warning: “don’t do this, or you will be in great trouble!” But it is ignored. The centurion in command and the ship’s owner can’t waste time, they need to get the job done! The ship runs into a violent storm. As the ship is battered on the violent sea day after day, the sailors start to fear for their lives, they get rid of the life boat, then the cargo, then the ropes, pulleys, and hooks are thrown overboard, and finally they stop eating and wait for the inevitable. All hope is lost.
But Paul speaks up again: “Take courage men, not one of you will be lost. Now eat some food!” This time he is not ignored. With their lives on the line, they do what Paul says and get rid of the rest of the grain.
God has stepped into the picture, and things will never be the same again. I’m excited to be sharing God’s word this Sunday, see you there!