Suddenly I felt a surge of gratitude in that theatre floating somewhere on the Caribbean Sea.
You see… (no pun intended there folks)
Ever since we went on our first cruise in 2012, Christine and I have preferred a cruise to a foreign beach holiday.
Why? Because it’s a fantastic experience.
And it’s usually much cheaper! (that surprised you, didn’t it? You can check out my cruise website if you want to know more).
On Easter Sunday in 2016, we found ourselves somewhere in the Caribbean.
And looking at the ship’s paper, we discovered that the Captain was going to conduct a traditional Easter Sunday service.
“I’ve gotta go to that, Luv,” I said to Christine. “A bit of tradition and all that…”
Arriving early, I secured a good seat about 3 rows from the front with a premium view of the stage.
The main theatre, where the service was being held, began to fill up until the Captain had a healthy congregation to preach to.
Just as a background… my wife and I go to church. But we prefer a more modern style of worship. Our services are vibrant and loud, with a band, modern songs, lighting effects and all the mod-cons…
So this was very different from the norm.
But I was really looking forward to experiencing the nice traditional service.
It began on time – as you’d expect for the captain of a ship.
We had a Bible reading, said a few prayers, and sang some of the great old hymns.
One of those hymns stood out.
I should have expected it, being at sea.
Can you guess?
Of course… It was “For those in peril on the sea”.
It’s one of those hymns we always tend to sing in maritime settings.
And what great words, eh?
Eternal Father, strong to save,
Whose arm hath bound the restless wave,
Who bidd’st the mighty ocean deep
Its own appointed limits keep:
O hear us when we cry to thee,
For those in peril on the sea
As we sang those powerful and emotive words from the hymn book, I began to feel a great sense of gratitude.
And a thankfulness that I was, at that very moment in time, in such an amazingly peaceful place, on board a sturdy, safe, modern cruise ship, sailing on the calm ocean within a friendly region…
Which is a very different situation from those occasions when the hymn is sung on warships, both modern-day and over many years of conflict.
Sometimes it’s beneficial to reflect and be grateful, isn’t it.
It’s good to experience a sense of thankfulness.
So go on! Give it a go!
No need to sing a hymn.
Just be thankful for something.
And I guarantee it’ll make a difference to your day.
How has thankfulness worked for you? What sort of difference did it make? Share it in the comments box below and let’s get the conversation rolling.