Manse Musings – Steering a straight course.

Back when I was a teenager I got the chance to be at the helm of a very large ship. It was an incredible experience that I will never forget. However part of the reason that I was on board the ship in the first place was that there had been a severe fire in the engine room some weeks before and it had knocked the ship’s schedule out and caused all sorts of confusion which meant that my father had to spend a day on board since he was a director of the company that owned the ship.
However as a result of the fire although one engine was still delivering full power the other was not. That meant that without constant steering corrections the ship would simply go round in circles. So all the time I was at the helm I was pushing against this force. After a while it was tiring and I was quite glad when someone else took over.
I think all of us have experienced this in some way in our own lives. When we try to change our inclinations, our habits, our way of doing things, in our own strength it is like battling against that turning force. We may succeed for a while, but sooner or later we tire and it becomes too much effort. How many of you have already given up your New Year’s resolution to lose weight and get fit at the gym and could not now find your gym membership card if your life depended on it? In order to change direction we have to change our mind and our heart. The Bible calls this repentance and it is a radical change of mind and direction that is a radical life change. God calls us to a radical change of mind and direction in life so that we will know his peace and his happiness, his blessedness for then you can steer a sure and straight course through this life.

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