Pastor Terry Benson
“We must pay greater attention to what we have heard so that we do not drift away from it.” Hebrews 2:1 (NRSV)
I went ocean kayaking once off the coast of Maine. A friend who lived there offered to let me use his kayak one afternoon, so I launched into the water and headed out around a small island that was just offshore. The day was a New England summertime gray – morning fog had mostly dissipated, but the sun was still hiding behind an overcast sky. It’s easy to underestimate the power of the ocean, especially when everything appears to be calm. I took in all the tranquil beauty my surroundings had to offer –the only sounds were the occasional gulls and the water lapping up against my little boat. Paddling a few hundred yards from the rocky shore I soon discovered that I had to keep focused on my direction because the kayak was constantly being pulled according to tidal currents. And after a couple of hours of paddling around the island, my arms ached. It was easy to stay afloat, but staying on course was a challenge because I had to be vigilant against drifting out to sea.Spiritual drift is the same way. It usually happens when everything appears to be going ok. We just get caught up in ourselves, our desires, our dreams and we don’t pay attention to where we’re headed. It’s hard work to keep on course. It’s hard work to stay focused on Jesus because the undercurrents pulling us away from Him are so powerful. Our Flesh in its weakness and craving and changing will take us off course if we allow. The World beckons and pressures us with all sorts of allurements and stresses, putting us in danger of being pulled away from Jesus if we allow it to capture our attention. The Devil seduces, oppresses, and taunts us with our failures even as he tries to lead us away from Christ. And we can quickly find ourselves hopelessly adrift by getting caught in his evil currents.
Our work is to stay engaged with Him, our effort is to stay focused on Him and to let His word guide, correct, inform and inspire us. Our only hope today is to keep our eyes fixed on Jesus Christ the “compass” of our destiny, and put all our strength into staying connected to Him.