Archive for August, 2011


August 3, 2011 3 comments
HMS Victory

HMS Victory

I love tall Ships. I love reading about tall ships. I love seeing pictures and images of wooden ships at sea with their pyramid of sails billowed out by the power of the wind. Even with sails furled these ships are a thing of great beauty to me.

I have a picture in my office of the HMS Victory, which Sue and I had the pleasure of visiting in 2005.  As I look at the picture, I remember the excitement I had in being able to stand on the deck of that great ship. I marveled at the miles of rope that wove across her spars and over my head, their ultimate purpose and function a mystery to me but not to the sailors who once wielded them.

The Victory was made almost entirely of wood, an engineering marvel of her day. She carried over 100 cannons on three gun decks, and it took over 800 men to sail her when she was at sea or in the midst of battle. She has been restored to resemble her days of glory just prior to the battle of Trafalgar, with one exception, there are no sails hanging from her spars. The Victory isn’t going anywhere.

I love the Church of Jesus Christ. I often liken it to a tall ship. I am thrilled at having an opportunity to stand again if you will on a ‘deck’ as the Pastor of this church. I am excited about our future, and where God is going to lead us. We are a good church. We have great destinations ahead of us. But like a beautiful tall ship we can never get there under our own power. Like a sailing ship needs the wind to get under way, the Church needs the Spirit of God to get where He has destined us to go, and if our sails are left furled we will never catch the winds of His Spirit.

We are on a new journey together, and claim God’s promise in Ezekiel that He has given us a New Spirit, a fresh wind if you will. We catch the wind of God’s Spirit by unfurling our sails in prayer and letting His Spirit fill us and stretch us like the canvas on a tall ship. Just like those great vessels need more than one sail to be at their best, it will take all of us waiting on God in prayer for our church to be what God has called us to be.

Our ‘Captain’ is Jesus. We have His orders in hand ‘Go…and make disciples… (Matthew 28:19).’ Our station is the peninsula of Palos Verdes. Let’s all obey the orders of our beloved Captain and ‘Make Sail,’ and let’s start moving towards our destiny together.


Pastor Joel

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