Sailing too close to shore is a condition that affects many of us today. We have been hurt or we have failed in the past so we stay close to shore. We fear trying new things or stepping out of our “safe” zone. Justifications appear from many supposed legitimate areas, but in the end we are just making excuses.
These verses are part of a famous prayer that Sir Francis Drake wrote and they speak to the naturally timid nature of people. However our sense of adventure and our feelings of being alive are lost when we choose safety. Many choose to live their adventure online, or in the gaming console world because their life has no adventure to attract them. The challenge for us today is to get out from the shore and to set sail on the open sea of life. Sir Francis Drake was the second man to circumnavigate the world. Let’s learn a few things from his example.
Out from the shore feelings
- Sailing away from shore means moving away from what is comfortable. Our feelings can be a roller coaster when we get away from the safety of our shore. We can go from exhilaration, to terror and back to exhilaration in the same day!. Being away from shore carries with it the emotions of a long journey. We have all been on long journeys like long drives to amusement parks or vacations. You love being there, but the drive to get there can sometimes be rough.
- The routine of safety and comfort can trap us in a cocoon of emotions that feel safe, but are a sad substitution for the real power of feelings that come from going in an unknown direction. How many people today are living a life void of the emotions that we were designed to feel and they are bored with life. Too many accept comfort or hide in a virtual world because life has become boring to them. They are living to close to shore. Exhilaration and the true energy of a life well lived can only happen on the open waters and not by the shore.
Out from the shore realities
- When we move away from shore there will be victories and defeats. Failure partners with victory on the open waters of life. To think that life won’t have victories and failures along the journey is to have a skewed view of life. This view can cause us to fear failure so much, we never venture to taste victory. To truly tase the sweetness of victory, you must live with the possibilities of defeat.
- Historical figures who we admire understand this principle. Abraham Lincoln failed many times before becoming president. Winston Churchill’s life was filled with many peaks and valleys along the journey. These men understood that to sail away from the shore promised no safety, but offered great opportunity. Our greatest accomplishments during the journey of life are only a road often littered with our failures and our victories. If we embrace the reality of victory and failure and see them as part of our journey, then neither one will distract us from our overall purpose. We will see them as a glorious reminder that we are out on the open water away from the shore
How close are you staying to the shore? Remember that the shore feels safe, but it paralyzes us from our purpose. What can you do today to start moving away from the shore?