By Elizabeth Prata
It’s really easy when we’re stressed, or depressed, or confused (or any time, really) to drift away from the throne. We might skip church once. Then twice. We might leave off praying, or not focus on it and make the prayers short. We might stop reading the Bible. I know I’ve had seasons like that.
Then the Spirit convicts me and I get back to it. I realize in how short a time I’ve drifted away from my Rock. We need Jesus every day. Every minute! Our flesh doesn’t like to grapple consciously with that fact, but we do. Jesus bled and died on the cross for us, to justify us before God so our sins would no longer be between us. He rose again and never sleeps, but ministers to each of us, and to His local churches- constantly.
When I lived on a small sailboat and cruised up and down the Atlantic Seaboard and over to The Bahamas, we became intimately involved with currents. These are invisible rivers just under the surface of the waters that gather and move in the same direction. You might have seen Weather Services or other Emergency Organizations warning you about rip currents at the beach. There are also currents formed by the tide, and there are currents driven by the wind. The greatest current we encountered was the Gulf Stream, a current that moves at between 4 and 6 miles per hour. That might not sound like much, but when your sailboat itself only moves at 4 or 5 mph, this is a doubling of speed.
You can’t see the current, and you can’t really feel it. You just suddenly realize that though you’d pointed your bow toward 180 degrees, you’ve drifted off course and are now sailing toward somewhere else entirely.
In navigation, set and drift are characteristics of the current and velocity of water over the ground in which a ship is sailing. Drift is the magnitude of the current (typically measured in knots). Set is the bearing the current is flowing. In order for a Garmin chartplotter or marine instrument to calculate Set and Drift values, the vessel will need to be equipped with GPS, Source: Garmin.
We did not have GPS (a Global Positioning System). It was before GPS was available to the public. So we charted our course the old fashioned way, constant vigilance at the wheel. Failure to be attentive to where the current was invisibly pushing you could land you on the rocks.
The world is the current that is trying to push a Christian off course and make us drift. It happens silently, invisibly, and incrementally. It’s a huge problem. We must be vigilant.
Don’t drift. It’ll happen before you know it- you’ve lost sight of the Rock, it’s a tiny dot in the distance, and though He welcomes you back to his feet through repentance, you will mourn the time lost glorifying Him. And you don’t want the world’s rocks to shipwreck you, either! Even temporarily.
Do you know what I think? I think the verse in Isaiah that says He will wipe away every tear, will be tears of joy at seeing Him, but also tears of sadness when we finally see not through a glass darkly but full on how much time we wasted…how much sinning we did…how much we cast aside our Savior, who groaned and bled for us.
Stay close to Jesus during this darkening time. He is the Light! He did it all for us!