A journey with no lifejackets necessary

Published 9:01 pm Thursday, August 3, 2017

Fifty years of marriage is a milestone — even if it is our fifty, so Othel and I decided a celebration commemorating this accomplishment was in order. A helpful travel agent directed us to a cruise sailing from Venice, around the Greek Isles with final docking in Rome.

It sounded adventurous especially since it would be our first cruise. It would definitely be scenic since travel books only attempted to capture the islands’ beauty.

Flying is certainly not as fun as pre-911 flights. The inconvenience (which I appreciate and gladly accept) is time-consuming and sobering. For every runway we exited, I wondered if a bomb might be riding with us which kept me in a praying mode during flight.

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When we landed in Venice I praised God for a safe flight and a chance to stretch my tired limbs. A water taxi picked us up and carried us and our traveling companions to our hotel. It was a city afloat and a grand one. After a two-day tour of Venice, we boarded our cruise ship.

This was the real step of faith for me. I don’t like bodies of water that are too deep to see the bottom, and I don’t like to lose sight of the shore. In fact, I would never watch the movie, “The Perfect Storm,” because it would be a triple horror movie for me.

With those handicaps I boarded a ship with growing apprehension. Would they allow me to wear a life jacket on the ship? Would the captain be a qualified, top-of-his-class pilot? Would I suffer from sea sickness or insomnia due to rough seas at night?

The questions mounted, but the initial emergency drill that was conducted before we pulled anchor helped exceedingly. There were lifeboats attached to the side of the ship and two lifejackets stowed in our closets. I was satisfied that ample precautions had been made.

After the first few hours at sea, I felt like a seadog and was amazed at the smooth sail our ship navigated. There was no rocking or nausea — just a giant ship making a path through the sea, and I was content to leave my life jacket in the closet.

There were 2000 passengers aboard our ocean-going luxury hotel with 900 workers to keep the vessel shipshape and us feeling like royalty. I actually lost sight of our destination because the means to reach it was so wonderful.

That’s not the way with this life. The journey can be filled with worry, sickness, heartache, fear, and whatever else the enemy throws in our path. But the final destination will come and for God’s children it will be unparalleled. His Word is our assurance: “No eye has seen, no ear has heard, no heart has imagined, what God has prepared for those who love Him.” And no lifejackets necessary.

Letters to Camille Anding can be sent to P.O. Box 551, Brookhaven, MS, 39602, or e-mailed to camille@datalane.net.