Shipwrecked

1 Timothy 1:18-20 (New Living Translation)

18 Timothy, my son, here are my instructions for you, based on the prophetic words spoken about you earlier. May they help you fight well in the Lord’s battles. 19 Cling to your faith in Christ, and keep your conscience clear. For some people have deliberately violated their consciences; as a result, their faith has been shipwrecked. 20 Hymenaeus and Alexander are two examples. I threw them out and handed them over to Satan so they might learn not to blaspheme God.

Breathless, beautiful Bethany walked backstage, beaming.  The sun couldn’t be brighter!  I had watched my friend walk a long, weary, and broken road of the heart.  I watched, feeling helpless to fill those wholes of emptiness.  For so long this woman, who was everything I wished I could be, walked with a shadow across her face, and with a story she was too tired to tell.  I finally learned something of that story when she sat backstage next to me at Lifehouse.  Her story reminded me so much of my own… we both had shipwrecked.

What she shared with me has sent me on a journey.  When a ship is driven off course and onto the cruel rocks of a desert island… it’s easy to believe everything is lost.  Much is lost. That ship, that faith, can’t be what it was now… it’s in shambles.  But you are the survivor… and you can still make something of that ship.  The risk of doing nothing means the greatest loss; your life, that God-glorifying breath and heartbeat.  The desert island physically challenges you, breaking you or daring you to give all that you are to the very last fiber.  The ship can be salvaged and a smaller vessel made… or a shelter, a sanctuary from the unforgiving sun.  Even in the bleakest hours of the night, when wild beasts seek you for prey, the broken vessel can keep you safe.  Some of us vainly try to set our ships on fire… to set our faith on fire… believing it will be a signal to other ships, hoping they’ll see it and come to our rescue.  God delights to rescue… but His ways of rescue are obscure to us.  He may or may not use another ship…  He may just use our shipwreck!  Isaiah 61 speaks of God building on the old wastes of a broken city, of our broken lives.  He is the shipbuilder… when our faith is lost at sea, shipwrecked, and broken… He goes after us and puts all that we need in our hands, working beside us on a new vessel… building a new faith in us, a stronger faith in us.

The high seas are dangerous… pirates come to steal and pillage your cargo, hatefully blasting wholes in your ship.  The winds and storms bring down a mast or two.  The harsh winter takes the life and spirit… your hope, right out of you.  Cling to your faith in Christ.  Even the wind and waves obey Him.

If your faith is shipwrecked, let Him be your Rescuer…

I love my Bethany,

Charity

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