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Ebs or Ebbs?

The title of this blog is important. Although it is a play on words associated with the nickname of Ebenezer Baptist Church in Scarborough, it is also a reminder that life is characterised by ebbs and flows of a tidal nature. Tides have peaks and troughs known as springs and neaps. Spring tides are higher at high tide and lower at low tide, while during neap tides the tidal range is much smaller. In some places the changing tides are barely noticeable, while in the Bay of Fundy the sea can rise and fall by up to fifty-three feet (sixteen metres).

Years ago I was second officer of a ship at anchor in the Bay of Fundy. While I was on watch one afternoon the chief officer and a couple of others left the ship in a lifeboat to explore a nearby island. When they did not return the captain sent me in our second lifeboat with two others to search for the missing boat and men. What we found was quite astonishing. Our chief officer had turned his back on the tide, and the tide left him high and dry, stranded on the beach. It was not what one normally expects of a professional seafarer!

High and Dry?

We might not expect it, but sometimes life seems to leave us high and dry. Being stranded can be just as bad as being caught in a storm. Helplessly we wait desperately hoping that we will be rescued. But consider this. A low spring tide exposes much that is usually hidden beneath the sea. What if a stranding is part of God’s plan for your life as He provides a place for reflection, for exploration? Has God really left you high and dry, or is He challenging you to take time to explore your relationship with Him? Perhaps a stranding was the only way He could catch your attention. Now open your eyes and look around. This is not a desert, but a place of beauty, crafted by God’s hand. It is a place where you can feed. He made it for you. Pray that the tide will not come in too quickly. Rest in His presence. Be enveloped by His love. When God is
ready, He will send the high tide to gently refloat you.

Luke 5:16 But Jesus often withdrew to lonely places and prayed (NIV)