Anchor of Stability

Acts 27:1–26

The next day, as gale-force winds continued to batter the ship, the crew began throwing the cargo overboard. The following day they even took some of the ship’s gear and threw it overboard. The terrible storm raged for many days, blotting out the sun and the stars, until at last all hope was gone. (Acts 27:18–20)

The anchor of stability holds firm when your navigation system fails. It’s easy to lose your bearings in the storm. You can’t find your way through the circumstances you face. Life rolls along fairly smoothly until suddenly the seas grow rough. Unseen problems occur. They were not in the forecast. In Luke’s words, “All hope of our being saved” is abandoned.

Those are treacherous moments when we reach the point of abandoning hope. At that difficult, gut-wrenching moment, God says, “Don’t be afraid, I have a plan.”

People facing intense adversity find it difficult to focus on anything other than the towering waves and stinging winds. Paul firmly announces, “Be of good cheer . . . we’ve heard from the Lord that none will be lost.”

We find stability in storms through what God has said. Your tendency will be to turn to another source for strength rather than the Word of God. Don’t go there! The only anchor of stability that will hold you firm, no matter how intense the gale-force winds, is God’s written Word.

All this reminds me of a statement made by one of the ancient Jewish prophets, which supports the reliability of God and His Word. The following words flow from the seasoned hand of Isaiah: “But now, thus says the LORD, your Creator, O Jacob, and He who formed you, O Israel, ‘Do not fear, for I have redeemed you; I have called you by name; you are Mine! When you pass through the waters, I will be with you; and through the rivers, they will not overflow you'” (Isaiah 43:1–2).

What encouraging words! “Do not fear, I have called you by name.” What a great thought!

Isaiah was not writing of literal waters or actual rivers. His figure of speech emphasized encroaching circumstances that threatened the stability of one’s faith. When the waters rise to dangerous depths, when difficulties reach maximum proportion, when your ship seems to be disintegrating board by board and starting to sink by life’s inevitable storms, God is faithful. He promises, “I will be with you.” He is your anchor.

Taken from Great Days with the Great Lives by Charles Swindoll. Copyright © 2005 by Charles R. Swindoll. Used by permission of HarperCollins Christian Publishing. www.harpercollinschristian.com

Posted in Crisis and tagged .

Accuracy, clarity, and practicality all describe the Bible-teaching ministry of Charles R. Swindoll. Chuck is the chairman of the board at Insight for Living and the chancellor of Dallas Theological Seminary. Chuck also serves as the senior pastor of Stonebriar Community Church in Frisco, Texas, where he is able to do what he loves most—teach the Bible to willing hearts. His focus on practical Bible application has been heard on the Insight for Living radio broadcast since 1979.