Friday, September 25, 2015


One of the most pressing problems for the European Union presently is that of the migrants who set out to cross the Mediterranean every week in search of a better life. In the Far East a similarly ghastly scenario is unfolding as thousands of Rohingya migrants flee persecution in their homeland, Burma. Some of these have not been allowed to disembark in neighbouring countries and have been turned away to face the perils of the merciless Andaman sea, the horrors of further weeks adrift and the all too real possibility of perishing in the insatiable waves.

While many flee persecution, others are ‘economic’ migrants wanting to escape poverty, while yet others merely want peace and safety for their children. All have paid substantial sums to unscrupulous human traffickers and smugglers; they are herded like animals on to flimsy, unsafe boats that were never built for the journey they have to undertake. Many have perished, lost at sea and their hopes of reaching safety have been cruelly dashed.

They entrust their future to dishonest people who have no interest in their welfare and who could not care less if they ever reach their desired destination; all they are interested in are the ill-gotten gains of their evil trade. In some cases, crews have abandoned the boats and left their hapless passengers to face whatever dangers may befall them.

We are all migrants, crossing the uncertain sea of life with its countless dangers. We are being swept by the restless tides of time towards eternity with only one of two destinations ahead; heaven or hell. Every second of every minute of every hour of every day; even as we sleep, we are drifting nearer and nearer to the great forever that lies beyond this fleeting life, this brief crossing. We are moving inexorably from time to eternity, yes, but ‘whither, whither bound’? It is a journey from which we cannot escape; we cannot reverse, we cannot drop anchor and remain stationary, we cannot decelerate and yet many are careless, drifting aimlessly, with no assurance as to which destination they will inevitably arrive.

Many heed the unwise and mistaken advice to keep going and not worry about the outcome; it will all work out well eventually. Others have placed their hopes in religion, good works, charitable deeds, sailing along, with many a nagging doubt, towards an uncertain future. Others try to convince themselves that there is no great, eternal world on the other side, making lies their refuge and trying to rest and shelter in the tattered tent of atheism and agnosticism.

However, there are many of us who are sure as to where we are going and like the apostle Paul, we can confidently affirm, "I know whom I have believed, and am persuaded that He is able to keep that which I have committed unto Him against that day" 2Timothy 1.12. We knew that we could never reach heaven by our own feeble efforts, nor did we deserve a home on that celestial shore and so we trusted our eternal wellbeing to the capable and competent hands of the Lord Jesus. We were certain that if we remained as we were, we would undoubtedly arrive in the eternal night of hell.

In spite of knowing all this, many, like the ill-fated mariners on board the ship where Jonah was a passenger, row all the harder and hope against all hope and sanity that they will at last make it to heaven. You have one; one only option, "Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and thou shalt be saved" Acts 16.31.

We have an anchor that keeps the soul

Steadfast and sure while the billows roll;

Fastened to the Rock which cannot move,

Grounded firm and deep in the Saviour’s love.

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