For Paul, the events of the storm and shipwreck were no surprise. The Lord revealed to him all the pain and loss that were about to occur. Still, for the other 276 folks on board, this strange little man was a puzzlement. He continued to tell them to stay on board, to eat and not to worry, they would survive–still the storm raged and the boat was being beat to death.
Paul’s faith inspired the Roman Centurian, it kept the prisoners from escaping and the rest of the crew from mutiny. Against their better judgement all the men ate and stayed on the boat. So, what was the outcome? Everybody survived. Just as God promised, He saved all lives for the sake of Paul.
It was a horrific event; none would have ever chosen the ship journey knowing how it would end. Still, each man on the ship was able to see God do amazing things to save their lives. They saw God spare them, even though they were not disciples.
How many times has God forced us to trust Him when all seemed lost?
When our lives, like the ship, are being beat to a pulp and we have lost all we knew to be ours; only to later see that God has supplied exceedingly and abundantly more than we could ever hope or dream.
Faith is trusting in things hoped for and not seen. Even in matters of life and death, we follow God’s lead and do not trust our own abilities to somehow carry us through. Like this story, trusting God often defies human logic–that is why it is so amazing.
That is How Paul brought the men to safety and that is how we finish our journey well.
God Bless You
On the fourteenth night we were still being driven across the Adriatic[c] Sea, when about midnight the sailors sensed they were approaching land. 28 They took soundings and found that the water was a hundred and twenty feet[d] deep. A short time later they took soundings again and found it was ninety feet[e] deep. 29 Fearing that we would be dashed against the rocks, they dropped four anchors from the stern and prayed for daylight. 30 In an attempt to escape from the ship, the sailors let the lifeboat down into the sea, pretending they were going to lower some anchors from the bow. 31 Then Paul said to the centurion and the soldiers, “Unless these men stay with the ship, you cannot be saved.” 32 So the soldiers cut the ropes that held the lifeboat and let it drift away.
33 Just before dawn Paul urged them all to eat. “For the last fourteen days,” he said, “you have been in constant suspense and have gone without food—you haven’t eaten anything. 34 Now I urge you to take some food. You need it to survive. Not one of you will lose a single hair from his head.” 35 After he said this, he took some bread and gave thanks to God in front of them all. Then he broke it and began to eat. 36 They were all encouraged and ate some food themselves. 37 Altogether there were 276 of us on board. 38 When they had eaten as much as they wanted, they lightened the ship by throwing the grain into the sea.
39 When daylight came, they did not recognize the land, but they saw a bay with a sandy beach, where they decided to run the ship aground if they could. 40 Cutting loose the anchors, they left them in the sea and at the same time untied the ropes that held the rudders. Then they hoisted the foresail to the wind and made for the beach. 41 But the ship struck a sandbar and ran aground. The bow stuck fast and would not move, and the stern was broken to pieces by the pounding of the surf.
42 The soldiers planned to kill the prisoners to prevent any of them from swimming away and escaping. 43 But the centurion wanted to spare Paul’s life and kept them from carrying out their plan. He ordered those who could swim to jump overboard first and get to land. 44 The rest were to get there on planks or on other pieces of the ship. In this way everyone reached land safely.