When I was little my family did some 'messing about in boats' but they were small craft with oars or a motor. Recently one of my sons owned a fabulous motor boat where we all spent many happy hours. I have not spent any time on sail boats. But I am always aware of those passages in the New Testament where boats are mentioned. Peter owned boats and had partners in the fishing trade. They were familiar with being out on the water at all hours and under all weather conditions. Paul made many voyages around the Mediterranean.
As we approach a new year, it is almost like taking our craft out of the protected harbor and beginning a new voyage. One can feel a bit becalmed in the harbor, setting sail near the shore, but when the wind arises out in the open water it is a different story. Each new year is a new opportunity, a trust placed on us to use our gifts and talents, a time to grow. It may often seem like the wind is in your face, holding you back, making you struggle. And yet....in those very conditions the disciples saw Jesus walking on that same water. He was showing us that we can choose to stay above the waves and calm the storm. In one instance, when he joined them in the boat they were instantly at their destination. The Christ was with them so time and distance could not hold them back or hinder their progress.
This is the time to prepare to leave the harbor. No good sailor would launch out without being sure everything was in order and the supplies were on board. He would have charted his course. He would have chosen his destination. Make your plans for 2010 as if you were going on a cruise. Don't let negative thoughts, adverse conditions, or poor preparation turn you back.
It's going to be a wonderful trip.