Let God Be The Wind & The Waves
People who sail love the feeling of being on the water, carried by the waves. Imagine a person in a navy-striped shirt sitting in a sailboat, reclining a little, hair blowing in the breeze. Their head tilts just a little, angling their face toward the rays of the sun. As they sit, the boat steadily heads towards its destination, powdered by the wind and the waves.
Now picture the same person crossing the finish line of a marathon. Instead of navy stirpes, they wear running shorts with a number pinned to the front of their shirt. Displaying amazing strength, they finish the race with legs buckling and shaking in effort and accomplishment. Their mental and physical toughness pushes through each obstacle and every breath.
Both the Sailor and the Runner get to their destination. Both are diligent and skilled: they learn their craft, work hard, and preserve.
But there’s a difference: The Runner earns their prize through their own effort. They carried themselves across the finish line. They are the one who trained-it’s their discipline, their sweat, and their power. No one else takes the credit, and no one else shares the glory.
Sailing also takes skill and discipline; it’s not a job for the lazy. But the power of the boat? That’s up to the wind and the waves. In fact, sailing can’t happen without them.
While The Sailor cares for the boat, sets the sails, turns the rudder, and tacks and jibes, the power isn’t theirs to muster. Though they may set the direction and influence the speed, nothing happens without the wind and the waves.
The story of the Runner and the Sailor illustrates the difference between hollow trying and fruitful faithfulness. You see, God wants to be the Wind and the Waves, and He wants us to sail. He doesn’t need our sweat, tears or effort. He wants our trust.
Our call as humans has always been to rely on Him. Of course, we are called to diligence, but humility demands we embrace the smallness of our own power. Our effectiveness as disciples lies not in our trying out, but in our willingness to follow His voice, believe His Word, and trust His ability.
The storms come and the sun shines. The waves pick up, calm down, get violent or become still–with no regard to our wishes, our will or our strength. Through it all, The Sailor knows their task is to watch, learn, adjust, cling, enjoy, trust and be faithful in taking care of the boat.
Will you allow God to be the Wind and the Waves in your ministry and in your life? Can you learn to join Him more and fight less against His current?
The next time you see a sailboat, say a prayer –remind yourself to quit trying so hard and let His current do its work.
I’m praying that more and more you chose to tilt your head back in the rays of the sun and acknowledge your smallness in the wake of His power.
Until next time
Keep Looking Up