The passages we looked up in today’s lesson regarding Paul reminded me of a story I once read about Dwight Moody. Moody was a preacher in the late 1800s. When he turned 55 it was detected by his Doctor that he had a heart condition and recommended that he take things easy to prolong his life. Shortly after the diagnosis and pledge of a slower pace, he, along with his son, boarded the Spree to cross from England to New York. However, several days into the voyage the Spree had one of the steam engines seize throwing a shaft all the way through the hull of the ship. While the crew worked to stem the flow of water into the ship, it flooded the rear compartments, making it unable to navigate and floating severely off course to the north in very rough waters. The boat began to list heavily and it was beginning to sink when Moody organized the passengers, huddled together, into a prayer service. One crew member, moved by the renewed hope and confidence of the prayers, left the service and brightened the signal fires in all the burning lamps on deck. Several hours later, the USS Lake Huron, noticed what appeared to be a boat on fire far in the distance to the north. The Christian captain, steamed over 2 ½ hours off course to reach the vessel and, when the waves were too mighty to even through a rope aboard during the night, waiting alongside until morning. Daybreak brought clear seas and the captain of the Huron secured a tow rope and proceeded to tow the vessel back to Ireland, praying for calm seas and that his own coal supply would hold for the journey. The boats arrived back at port and docked with only 15 minutes worth of coal left for the steam engines.
Moody indicated the experience taught him, no matter how much time we have left, life is too short to “take it easy.” It is said the last 7 years of his life, starting after the shipwreck, were the most productive in terms of bringing believers to the gospel. Attendance in his events were not measured in people but in the acres the people covered to hear him preach.
Moody said, we are in a sinking boat that is called life, we will all drown with no power of our own and engulfed in sin. The only alternative is to accept the invitation of Christ through the lifesaver of faith to be in His boat called righteousness.
Suffering is not something God leads us in to. It is just the reality of our situation of our life of this world. If we aren’t bobbing up for air, we have already given up to sin and are drowning. But accepting the merciful hand of our savior – there is no greater glory than His sure and sound vessel – and no greater destination than His home.
imprisoned, flogged, 5 x 39 lashes, 3 x rods, stoned and left for dead, 3 x shipwrecked, night and day in open sea, danger from rivers, bandits, Jews, Gentiles, city, country, false believers, gone without sleep, food, water, cold, naked, concern for the church. Yet, pressed in but not crushed, struck down but not destroyed, persecuted but not abandoned.. in the Holy Spirit and in sincere love
Magnificent, highly renowned, brightness, splendor, magnificence, majesty
2 Cor: being transformed into his image and ever-increasing glory which come from Lord
Phil: …will transform our lowly bodies so that they will be like His glorious body
Col: glorious riches of mystery: Christ in you, the hope of glory
2 Thes: chosen as 1st fruits to be saved through sanctifying work of H/S called to share in glory
Heb: Christ, pioneer of our salvation is perfect through suffering to bring many sons to glory
suffering is temporary, glory is eternal. Suffering unites us with Christ who suffered and died for our sins. Suffering is from man but glory is from God. Suffering shows us we are on the path of greater glory like gold refined in fire