Reading of Devotional "Catch the Wind"

In the late eighteenth century, wind was oil. Before petroleum
began to fill the veins of the industrial revolution, wind filled the
sails of adventure and commerce, and Britannia ruled the waves.
Enormous sheets of canvas hung like the blades of a turbine in the form
of topsails and topgallants on barks, frigates, and British Men of War.
Steam engines were still a novelty and Ben Franklin had just recently
discovered electricity using his kite and string. Inquisitive men were
probing the powers of the universe and searching the globe for its
hidden treasures.
Leaving the calm, comfort, and safety of the harbor, brave men worked
the spider web of line and sail, in a kind of dance with the wind. As
the wind increased the first mate would order more cloth to rise in
procession like faces on a totem pole, and as the wind increased even
more, one by one, the sails would be taken in and furled. When the winds
blew in storm like fury all canvas was removed and captains (as in the
Book of Acts) would "let her drive."
Steam, Oil, and other forms of power have seen the disappearance of
schooners and those who knew the art of the ancient mariner and skill
needed to ride the wind. There was a time when lighthouses dotted the
shoreline and men studied the tide's ebb and flow. There was a time when
men were close to nature and much closer to God. There were times when
sailors dreaded the doldrums as much as the fury found in rounding Cape
Perhaps a seaman or midshipman out at sea in the eighteenth century
never broke the sound barrier when it came to speed, but somehow I think
he experienced life more while feeling the wind upon his cheek, smelling
the salt in the air, hearing the breaking of waves on a wooden hull, and
he came closer to touching heaven than modern man ever will with all his
When the Ship of Zion first left port in Acts Chapter One, it waited
for the wind and the tide of the New Testament. The early church
comprised of one hundred and twenty souls, gathered in the port of an
appointed place on the orders of its Master and Commander. The Book of
Acts is a divinely preserved ship's log. In it we see her sails catching
the wind. When those sheets were not filled with the Spirit they were
being filled with prayer. Never was there a ship more beautiful or one
that moved with more grace, or was under more power than she. Reading
about it in books, even in God's Book is not enough. Standing on the
dock and watching it set sail, just will not do. We must not miss this
boat. The church was christened on Pentecost. While it is true that
heaven is paid for in full, it is also true, that those who gathered in
the upper room that day were those who would gladly pay whatever it
might cost just to be on board. -id


(this is also an introduction to the Book of Acts study found on this site)