Do you have a boat? Have you ever owned one or wanted to? One thing is for sure-if you have one, it’s important that you use it! If it never leaves the dock, it will deteriorate rapidly. Boats are meant to be used. They are meant for adventure!
Walk around any marina and you’ll easily be able to spot the vessels that rarely leave the dock. When most people acquire a boat they have grand visions of fun days out on the water filled with sunshine, Jimmy Buffet music, cold drinks, photo ops, etc… But for a myriad of reasons boats often get neglected. Sometimes life gets in the way, the novelty wears off, the owner has a bad experience such as a storm, and so on… Whatever the reason may be, some boat owners often wind-up missing out on the great adventure they’d so desperately wanted to experience…all because they never left the dock.
If you want to experience the great adventure of boating, one thing’s for certain…YOU HAVE TO LEAVE THE DOCK!
Recently, during my quiet time, I read the following excerpt from Oswald Chambers:
“If you yourself do not cut the lines that tie you to the dock, God will have to use a storm to sever them and to send you out to sea. Put everything in your life afloat upon God, going out to sea on the great swelling tide of His purpose, and your eyes will be opened. If you believe in Jesus, you are not to spend all your time in the calm waters just inside the harbor, full of joy, but always tied to the dock. You have to get out past the harbor into the great depths of God…”
It’s easy to find excuses to stay at the dock, not just for boaters but for followers of Jesus, too. We long for the safety and security provided in environments that give us the illusion of control. We instinctively gravitate toward the calm waters inside the harbor…not what lies beyond it, far out from the safety of the shore. Often mystery scares us because it’s unknown and therefore appears unsafe. But that’s not the life Jesus calls us to.
“Come, follow me,” Jesus said, “and I will send you out to fish for people.” (Matthew 4:19). Jesus commanded us to follow him out into the water, away from the safety of the dock. He calls us beyond the shore, to leave behind the certainty of what we know, and enter into an ocean of mystery as we cast our lives out to tell the story of God’s love and redemption for us.
Are you stuck at the dock? Is life getting in the way? Have you had a bad experience that’s causing you to doubt yourself or God? Has the ‘feeling’ of wanting to follow Jesus faded because obedience to his plan means that we must trust him completely to be our captain? What’s keeping you at the dock?
Take some time today and consider the following question as you pray, reflect, journal, and spend time with God: “Am I playing it safe at the dock or have I cast off my lines to follow Jesus into the mystery of God’s provision?”
Think about it!