When I was first learning how to sail my dad’s sailboat out of Lake Michigan, he would often say to me, “Go ahead and take the boat out, but take a friend with you.”
A 42-foot sailboat on a body of water the size of Lake Michigan is a big responsibility. But always up for a challenge, I’d find a junior high friend to accompany me, and we’d sail past the breakwater, hoist the sails, and head out to open water. But as soon as I’d see any cloud formation coming our way or the wind seemed to be piping up, I’d head back towards shore, take the sails down, and regain my normal breathing pattern only when we were safely tied up in the slip. Most of the time, it was fun having a friend along, but in a storm I knew this kid wouldn’t be much help.
Other times, however, my dad would come home from work and we’d go out together. When I was sailing with my dad, I’d actually look for cloud formations and hope for heavy air. I loved the feel of the strong winds and huge waves!
My dad had sailed across the Atlantic Ocean. He had endured five days of sailing through a hurricane. He was a veteran, and I was confident that he would be able to handle anything Lake Michigan could throw at us. Everything changed when my dad was on board.
Citation: Bill Hybels, The God You’re Looking For (Thomas Nelson, 1997)
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