Thursday, 10 September 2015
Our holiday this year was eventful. Camping in Dorset on the site with the UK's most unhygienic toilets (I will not go into detail, suffice to say we nicknamed them the '$#€¥holes'.). We experienced beauty, hot sunshine, relaxing beaches, drenching rain and the occasional breathtaking sunset.
Without a doubt, my favourite excursion was to visit a lighthouse on Portland. Jutting out on a cliff edge, this lighthouse is still in use and we (much to the boys delight - 'this is boring mum, why can't we just explore it ourselves?') took a guided tour to the very giddy top. The view was extravagant. Open, glittering seas. Bright blue skies. Endless possibilities.
As we made our way round, singing a well know Rend Collective song just to embarrass our teenage son, we found this poster.
This tickled all my bones of adventure so I immediately snapped a photograph and lodged the quote at the back of my mind to ponder.
Speaking a few days later to some friends who have spent years working on boats across the world, I discovered an interesting fact:
If a boat is moored in the harbour for too long, it rots away. Not only is a boat not built for staying safe at the shore, if it hangs around longer than necessary it is detrimental to the very workings of the boat. My learned friends went even further and explained to me that the Captains they knew would choose to 'island hop' with their boat rather than keep it in one place for too long because of the negative effects to both the boat and the crew.
I'm sure you can see where I'm going with this.
As followers of Jesus and as a church, we are not called to stay safe in the harbour. We are called to go. Our lives are not supposed to be 'safe' but we have the opportunity to partner with a God who takes us on the most thrilling adventure we could ever go on.
I know that, for me, when I stay still for too long I begin to rot. I become introspective. I find myself becoming anxious about circumstances beyond my control. I trip up over small obstacles. I begin to think rotten thoughts which in turn start coming out of my mouth. I feel dragged down by an anchor that holds me back rather than being set free by the wind in my sails.
But when I look out to sea from the heights of the lighthouse, I see adventure waiting. I see the unknown beckoning it's finger to me and calling me to set sail. I see the potential for storms and for calm waters.
I see a whole, broken, bleeding world and I know that I cannot stay safe in the harbour anymore.