My wife and I are dreaming to go on a cruise one day. I really cannot imagine what it was like to be on the Titanic — that 9 deck, state of the art, luxurious cruiser. Just think of the pinnacle of amenities that it had back in 1912: a huge indoor pool, gym, libraries, several high-end restaurants, and, get this – WiFi (well, it was wireless radiotelegraph transmitter for sending passenger "marconigrams") – bleeding edge of technology in the day.
Unfortunately, we all know what happened.
Although 2224 passengers thought it was unsinkable, it hit an iceberg on April 14, 1912 and sank less than 3 hours later. More than 1500 people on board died, including the captain and the architect of the ship, making it one of the deadliest commercial peacetime maritime disasters in modern history.
Did you know that there were 2 other ships in the area?
Only about 10 miles away was SS Californian. Although he observed the flares from sinking Titanic, Captain Lord thought it was too dangerous to try to reach her in the dark, so no timely assistance was given.
RMS Carpathia, on the other hand, was a daunting 58 miles from the wreckage. But when they have seen the flares from the Titanic and heard the distress call, Captain Roston gave the order to turn his ship around and come to the rescue.
Knowing the danger that exposure to icy water meant for the survivors, Carpathia did MORE than they could possibly do to help: the captain ordered all heat to the cabins to be turned off in order to give more power to the engines and this enabled the ship come to the rescue in only 4 hours instead of 5. People also gave the comforts of their rooms by converting them into infirmaries, as well as staying up all night to prepare hot food and drinks for the victims and ready the life-boats.
God miraculously lead the ship to avoid all the deadly icebergs in their path that fateful night. But when Carpathia arrived on the scene... there was no sight of Titanic… They were too late for over 1500 people, who could not stay afloat in freezing water.
However, they did save over 700 people who were in the lifeboats.
If it wasn’t for their timely and daring rescue, there probably would be no Titanic survivors!
Kinda reminds us of the word we live in now.
Three ships. The Titanic. The ship thought to be unsinkable, filled with everything the most exquisite taste can desire, yet in less than 6 days from the start of her maiden voyage — wrecked and torn apart being a ship of death to countless men, women and children.
The Californian. The ship that was placed by God in the position to rescue the dying. The ship that, instead, chose to do nothing.
Then, finally, the Carpathia. The ship that overcame obstacles and did everything needed to rescue souls.
Come to think of it, all of us were (some still are) on the Titanic. Enjoying all that life has to offer. Not realizing how short this life truly is. The only hope for the passengers of this ship is for someone to come and rescue them. While there is still time. Will someone come?
Thankfully, some of us were rescued by God from eternal destruction, but unfortunately found ourselves on the Californian. We are within arm’s reach of the struggling. The dying. The Lost… We know the danger they are in because we’ve been there…Yet, we do nothing because it’s too risky, or too expensive or too time consuming…
What’s too expensive for someone you love? How much is too much for someone your Savior died to rescue?
Last, there is the Carpathia. The ship that sees the distress flair and comes to the rescue! Yes, it’s a sacrifice. Yes, it’s uncertain whether it can succeed at all, but what if it made THE difference for just 1, or 10 or 700?
The question that each of us must answer is:
“Which ship am I on?”
We minister in Siberia. There is spiritual need all around us. And when we see the distress flares — the opportunity, we turn around from our gardens, our hobbies, our comfortable homes to serve in Orphanages, Addictions Ministry and Summer Youth Camps, proclaiming the Savior who came to rescue all.
Right now we have an opportunity: My wife and I personally (as well as our Russian church) are offering scholarships to the kids who want to come to Summer Youth Camp but cannot afford it. Unfortunately, there are still 20 more young people who desire to attend, but have no finances. Camp costs $60 per teen for a whole week of spending time with God, developing wholesome relationships and seeing other teens surrendering their lives to the Lord. This is the most evangelistic and fruitful time in our entire calendar.
Please pray for God to supply this great need by the middle of July. We know that He is able.