Get your Daily Encouragement with the Jesus Minute
Paul was being transported to Rome to appear before Caesar. It took longer to set sail than planned, then a decision had to be made, whether to wait out the winter where they were or to press on to another port along the island of Crete. Paul shared with the “powers that be” that he believed they should not try to sail this late in the winter, because of the certain storms. BUT they didn’t listen to his wisdom and set sail for Rome, hoping to make it to one more port and spend the winter there.
Well, the worst happened. They went into a massive storm. “Men, you ought to have followed my advice and not to have set sail from Crete and incurred this damage and loss. Yet now I urge you to keep up your courage, for there will be no loss of life among you, but only of the ship. For this very night an angel of the God to whom I belong and whom I serve stood before me, saying, ‘Do not be afraid, Paul; you must stand before Caesar; and behold, God has granted you all those who are sailing with you.’ Therefore, keep up your courage, men, for I believe God that it will turn out exactly as I have been told. But we will run aground on a certain island.”
The storm lasted for 14 days and nights in the Adriatic Sea and they surmised they were approaching some land.At almost dawn, Paul said, “Today is the 14th day that you have been constantly watching and going without eating, having taken nothing. Therefore I encourage you to take some food, for this is for your preservation, for not a hair from the head of any of you will perish.” All were encouraged and ate. There were 276 people on the ship.
At daybreak they saw land, not knowing where they were and tried to land the boat there. They hit a reef and the powerful force of the waves literally broke the ship apart. Some had to swim to shore; others grabbed a plank to float in to shore, but all were saved.
NOTE what’s happening here. The best wisdom would have been for them not to make the trip at this time, but they did. Now, Paul is stuck on the ship in the midst of the life-threatening storm. So, what can we learn from this scene? Three observations come up for me: 1. Even when you are caught up in bad or difficult situations, whether you caused them or they are caused by something else, God will still work in the midst of your troubles.
2. God seems to always have “His agent” hanging out in the midst of troubles. God used Paul to hold the crew and passengers safely together.
3. If you are walking with Jesus, your life and its circumstances are not all about you. God has you where you are for a purpose and many times it’s for the benefit of others who can’t help themselves. In other words, you may be a participant in a Jesus sighting. I think Jesus delights in doing this!