between today and tomorrow can be immense...the space
between now, and next, vast. One hundred years ago,
on April 14th, 1912, what was then the world's largest
luxury liner, rightly named Titanic ( which means
enormous, gigantic, colossal ) was plowing through the icy
North Atlantic on its maiden voyage from England to New
luminaries and millionaires, officials and tourists,
officers and deckhands, plus more than 700
immigrants...about 2,200 people in all. Most aboard
were going about their business or pleasure, expecting
tomorrow to be much like today. Those in first or second
class may have strolled the grand promenade, visited the
library, swum in the pool, exercised in the gymnasium or
even enjoyed a Turkish bath. Chances are immigrant
passengers had conversations about the hopes and promises
of life in America. And everyone felt safe since
the RMS Titanic was deemed "unsinkable" because of the
ship's double bottom and 16 watertight compartments.
But at 11:40pm,
on the 14th, the ship scraped an iceberg and began taking
on water. At 2:20am on the 15th, the Titanic would
plunge 2 1/2 miles to the ocean floor. In that short
span....less than 3 hours...fortunes, futures and families
were forever altered as more than 1,500 passengers from
every rank and social strata, lost their lives. That
early 1900s maritime tragedy is still the source of
fascination and speculation about what really happened and
what might've prevented the disaster.
There are times
for all of us when the difference between today and
tomorrow is titanic. Our "iceberg" may be a midnight
phone call, an unexpected pink slip or a devastating
diagnosis. Calamity can slice through our
unsinkable lives, making us long to turn the clock back
and have things go on as before. When we're in deep
waters of trouble, our futures often hinge on the things
that might've saved many, if not all, on the Titanic.
And when it comes to our spiritual life and health, how we
choose among these options make all the difference.
Action Or Deferment.
received at least seven warnings about icebergs, but
plowed forward without slowing. When Captain E. J.
Smith read one of the warning messages, he handed it
without comment to Bruce Ismay, director of the White Star
Line who reportedly stuffed it his pocket.
It's easy for us
to delay taking action that could prevent potential
problems, especially if we're not feeling their full
effects. Someday...we'll deal with this drinking problem,
if it really gets out of control. Someday...we'll
put more effort into our marriage and spend more time with
our kids. Someday...we'll figure out what we believe
about God and take action on our beliefs.....someday.
* Sos Or Silence
California was less than 10 miles away, that vessel never
received its calls because the wireless operator closed
his set at 11:30pm. Keeping the lines of
communication open with those around us is vital,
especially when we're struggling. Sadly, the muteness is
more often on our part...it's hard to ask for help.
But this gives me hope when I'm sinking: God never
shuts down for the night, and He welcomes my SOS 24/7.
Psalm 145:18 says....The Lord is near to all who call on
Him, to all who call Him in truth.
* Panic Or A
luxury, the Titanic carried 20 lifeboats...not nearly
enough for those on board and there had never been an
emergency drill. The time to consider what to do
when in trouble is before it happens. But even our best
plans may not always be enough. What then? We
can panic, or put our trust in the one never taken by
surprise...the one rightfully called Savior by those of us
who know we can't stay afloat by ourselves. We can
say with the palmist David: He reached down from on
high and took hold of me; He drew me out of deep waters.
Psalm 18:16 NIV
bobbing in the cold North Atlantic on April 15, 1912, hope
seemed remote...until they saw the lights of rescue
vessels. In a matter of hours, those who survived
through the frigid night would be safe, warm and dry
again, with their lives ahead of them.
give up if you find yourself just barely holding on to the
last piece of debris from a shipwrecked life. Call
out to the God who promises to hear and be near through
all the spaces between now and next. The difference
between today's loss and tomorrow's hope can be
immense...and the joy of a rescued heart, titanic.
special columist to the Seattle Times
Jodi Detrick is
a minister with the Northwest Ministry Network (
Assemblies of God) She is also a public speaker, an
author and a life coach.