Sailing Single Stage 2: Powerboat, Rowboat, Sailboat - The Vessel Matters

[FIRST READ STAGE 1: Bon Voyage: Embarking On Your Singleness Journey -

[Stage 1 is a HEALTHY LONG READ]

So at this point…God had drawn me out to sea. He'd taken away what FELT like the most important thing in my life. He isolated me from my surroundings; friends, family, and distractions. And He put me in the middle of the ocean, with no land in sight.

Later that evening I forced myself to explore the ship. Making my way to the upper deck, I stood at the bow, reenacting that epic titanic scene (you know the one where the wind is blowing and there are all cute and what not..yeah that one).

For the first time since boarding, I stood there and I realized just how fast the ship was moving. The cruise liner was slicing through the seas at least 40 miles per hour. That might seem slow compared to driving on land but at Sea its NASCAR. The wind nearly sent me flying overboard. I took several huge steps back, paused for a moment in awe of the speed, stared at the helm of the ship and then quietly walked back to my room.

As the ship docked the next morning, I peered out of my window only to see several people rowing in single person boats along the Bahamian shore. As the group of 5 rowboats passed by, one of them began to lag behind, presumptively from the rower's exhaustion. As her friends encouraged her to keep rowing, she (the rower) seemed to be getting more frustrated. I thought to myself no matter how much her support system encouraged, she would only be able to go as far as her arms would take her.

Later that day, I mustered up the energy to leave the ship and take to the land. I spent half of my excursion resting on the beach. As I lay on the sand under the shade of a huge tree with leaves that seemed to eclipse the sunrays, I observed MANY people (mostly couples-- because you know when your single ALLLL you see are couples everywhere). And there was an older (Maybe 60s) couple who were standing at the dock waiting to rent a sailboat for the day. I watched them get in the boat, shove out toward the open water and glide across the ocean, the vessel effortlessly led by the cool Caribbean breeze.

Reflecting on the previous boat related encounters, I thought to myself? "WHAT TYPE OF VESSEL AM I ON?". Was I going at NASCAR engine speed? Was I rowing aimlessly from my own firepower? Or was I being led effortlessly? I sat there thinking hard about that…

So -- why do I recall this memory?

Because at that moment I learned something God wants us to always remember….

We MUST be MINDFUL and AWARE of the MODE of transportation by which we endure our life's journey. After doing some research after the trip, I found that there are three type of passenger vessels at sea. There is the POWERBOAT, THE ROWBOAT, and THE SAILBOAT. Let's take a deep look at them all.

THE POWER BOAT:

This is the fast lane. Much like the massive cruise liner, slicing through the sea, the powerboat is hurtling toward a destination at full speed. The Powerboat requires human effort to steer it, and mechanical/ technological effort to make it work. In order for the powerboat to get to its destination, there is a heavy reliance on the aforementioned to succeed. The captain must be well equipped and the crew must be knowledgeable, without them the boat could not function.

Many of us choose to charter our journeys on powerboats. Crashing through life's waves at full force, nearly falling over when we PUT OURSELVES at the helm. We rely on our own knowledge base, accolades, and "crew" to get to where we are destined to be. Although this mode of transportation gets us from point A to B quickly -- up the corporate ladder, in a quick to start (and end) relationship, or get rich quick ploy, we often have to sacrifice a piece of the scenic experience to get there.

THE ROWBOAT:

This vessel is the "I can do it all by myself" boat. In order to move forward, the rowboat requires manpower only, no special technical skills or knowledge, just good ole energy. Think about the woman in the rowboat earlier, how she tired herself out trying to keep up with the rest of the pack. How often do we row ourselves tired trying to keep up with where we think we should be in life, focusing all of our energy on chasing what they tell us we should be doing -- rushing into career choices for the sake of money, scrambling up relationships because everyone else is getting engaged, having children because baby fever tell us were missing out. The rowboat lifestyle requires no guidance or direction, just constant energy burn.

Luckily there is another way to go through life that won't have us clambering through or burning out..

THE SAILBOAT:

The interesting thing about the sailboat is that is powered by a CONJOINED effort. The operator must bring the docked boat to the water -- physically push it out to sea, hoist the sails of the vessel and then identify which way the wind is blowing so that the sails can be adjusted. From there, the wind carries out its responsibility of pushing the boat in the right direction. THE RELATIONSHIP DETERMINES THE DESTINATION. There is a balance of TASK and TRUST in order to set sail. This is symbolic of the relationship we must foster with God and His Holy Spirit. When God calls us out to sea, take time to prepare: gain the strength to push your vessel out into the unknown. Fixate on the process raise your anchors, hoist your sails, and then trust the wind to guide you to the place you're set out for.

Today I want to encourage those taking their journeys on Powerboats and Rowboats to consider their voyage thus far. Are you being guided by The Spirit? Are you working together with God to forge toward your destinations? How can we disembark those vessels and climb aboard the sailboat of life?

[READ: Matthew 14:31-33]

This is @blackgirlspray


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