Read a great segment from a book called “Exploring the Depths of Jesus Christ” yesterday. Really struck me as how God grows us into the people he wants us to be. Enjoy:
“When sailors first take a ship out of port it is very difficult to head her out to sea. They must use all their strength to get that ship clear of the harbor, but once she is at sea she moves easily in whatever direction the seaman chooses.
It is the same with you as you begin to turn within to God. You are like that ship at first you are very strongly bounded by sin and by self. Only through a great deal of repeated effort are you turned within, but eventually those ropes which bind you have to loosen.
Keep on turning within. Do so despite every failure, despite all the distractions that pull you away. If you will remain faithful and strong in this continual, turning gradually you will push off from the port of self, Leaving it far behind you will head for the interior to an abiding with God, for that is your destination.
What happens once the ship has left port? She moves farther and farther out into the deep sea and the farther from the port she goes the easier she moves.
There comes a time at last which she can use her sails, her oars are useless. They are laid aside, now her course is swift and what does the pilot do? He is content to spread the sails and hold the rudder. All he does now is keep the swiftly moving vessel gently on its course.
To spread the sails is to lay yourself before God in simple prayer. To spread the sails is to be moved by His spirit.
To hold the rudder is to keep your heart from wandering away from its true course. To hold the rudder is to recall the heart gently. You guide it firmly by the moving of the Spirit of God.
Now as you begin to move into Him, He will gradually gain possession of your heart. He gains it in the same way – little by little – that the gently breeze fills the sails and move the ship forward.
When the winds are favorable, the pilot rests from his work. The pilot rests and leaves the ship to be moved by the winds. Oh, what progress they make without becoming the least bit tired.
They are making more progress in one hour without any effort than they ever did before even when exerting all their strength. If the oars were used now, it would only slow the ship and cause fatigue. The oars are useless and unnecessary.”