Day 20: The Rake
2 Corinthians 11:3: (KJV) “But I fear, lest by any means, as the serpent beguiled Eve through his subtlety, so your minds should be corrupted from the simplicity that is in Christ.”
When the USS John F. Kennedy replenishes at sea, the captain moves his command post from his normal chair to one positioned in what is called auxiliary control (aux con). Aux con offers better control over this important evolution. The distance between the USS Seattle, the ship supplying us with goods, and the JFK must remain constant and steady. The ships are side by side as one ship takes fuel and supplies from the other. As you can imagine, technology has produced equipment that can easily assist the ships in gauging and maintaining the required distance. How complicated—or so I thought. The operations officer called me to the closest starboard point in aux con and said, “Chaplain, plant your foot here and look at the rake (a tiered fixture with prongs that are graduated like its namesake). Find a point on the Seattle with one of the prongs on the rake. As long as that point does not change, we are maintaining the same course and speed.” Before technology, this was the simple, effective method used to keep proper speed and distance.
The Apostle Paul was concerned about people coming in and complicating the gospel. He knew that the message of Christ was simple and straightforward. That message was as uncomplicated as taking a fixed position on the Savior, then consistently maintaining the proper course. In this day of so many technological advances isn’t it comforting to know that the way of salvation remains simple and plain. Dear Lord:
When I fix my eyes on you, determined not to sway,
Provide me with a spiritual rake so I won’t go astray;
Lead me in ways that are plain and simple to understand,
So when asked to show the way to others, I can easily say: I can!
Questions to Consider:
- How is my positioning with my Savior?
- What am I doing to ensure a steady course?
Reflection for the Day:
- Consider what the Apostle Paul meant by simplicity as it is recorded in the lesson text.