The Shipwrecks of Your Life
What shipwrecks have you experienced in your life up to now?
Shipwrecks represent the challenging seasons of our lives. You may have walked through a sudden job loss. You may have walked through a long season of depression. You may have walked through the grief process of a loved one. You might have faced extenuating healthy challenges.
Luke, the writer of Acts, shares a detailed account of Paul facing a shipwreck in Acts 27. By this point in the book, Paul has encountered three of these occurrences. The chapter goes into extraordinary nautical detail to the challenge of the storm.
2 Corinthians 11:25 reminds us that Paul faced three shipwrecks. Pause for a moment. Yes, Paul had a remarkable trust in God, but he also had experience in the face of the stormy seas. Luke anticipated that the original readers of Acts and modern readers of today would face similar seasons of shipwreck.
Many of you have found yourselves in a shipwreck season right now. We walk through seasons of shipwreck clutching our faith in the goodness of God along with the wisdom of the past. Your past shipwrecks inform how you will respond today. Your past has prepared you far more than you could ever realize.
Luke Timothy George in his commentary on Acts 27 says this:
God’s mastery of history is available not to empirical test but to the eyes of faith; even more important, the work of God in history does not have to do with tinkering with natural and human processes by arbitrary interventions, but in the direction of the human heart to the perception of these processes as revealing the purposes and call of God.
Luke Timothy George, Sacra Pagina, The Acts of the Apostles — pg. 258
You know people in your life have had multiple shipwrecks. They encounter crisis not only with the experience of the past and trust in God, but they offer calm to those around them. Jesus has not just walked you through multiple shipwrecks for your benefit, but He has walked through it to offer His peace to other people. That’s the story of Acts 27 and ultimately the story of our lives.
All of us to some degree would love for God to miraculously intervene in our current crisis. Never forget though, today’s shipwreck will prepare for the next one. Faith in the goodness of God and wisdom from the past go hand in hand.
What have you learned from the shipwrecks in your life? Share your insight in the comment section below.
PS — Do you want to process your own shipwrecks in a deeper way? Check out the message I shared at Browncroft on this passage in 2014 at the link below.
Originally published at https://peterenglert.com on May 13, 2020.