“Let God stere…”

As I study early American history (an important thing to do in this crazy election period), I keep bumping into a quote I found in Samuel Morison’s European Discovery of America. It is an old poem from 1520:

Gentyl maryners on a bonne viage, Hoyce up the sayle and let God stere; In ye bonaventur makyng your passage. It is ful see the wether fayre and clere.

Hoist your sail and let God steer! That was the way of exploring before we learned good navigation and the means of sailing into a variety of winds. And it is not a bad way to live now and then even today. Sometimes we are — or think we are — in control of our own lives but for each of us there are times when we simply entrust ourselves so completely into the love and grace of God that we simply catch the Spirit and let the Lord move us along.

That’s how Char and I ended up spending ten years of our lives in Hawaii. The place is beautiful, of course, and the culture a rich mixture of East, West, and South Seas. But to this day, 36 years after we left, it is the memories of the truly wonderful people we got to be with that still cause us to thank God for leading us to a place we’d never dreamed of going.

We hoisted our sails and rejoiced in God’s leading. In that as in so many other experiences we’ve known over the years, the Lord has proven to be kind and creative and, above all, faithful. When I remember how I lived before entrusting myself to God in Jesus Christ, all I can do is thank God for saving me from that awful emptiness.


About mthayes42

I am a retired pastor, interested in the Bible, cross-cultural ministries, Dietrich Bonhoeffer, and the current and past history of western civilization.
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