Summary: Life is a hodgepodge of experiences—some good, some bad. There are people who say that life is a struggle, and others say life is good. I have heard different people say that life has its hills and valleys, or they say it has its ups and downs. Bu
Title: Four Anchors
Text: “Then, fearing lest we should run aground on the rocks, they dropped four anchors from the stern, and prayed for day to come.” (Acts 27:29).
Bible Reading: Acts 27:13-36
Life is a hodgepodge of experiences—some good, some bad.
There are people who say that life is a struggle, and others say life is good.
I have heard different people say that life has its hills and valleys, or they say it has its ups and downs.
But, I would bet that all of us would say; “I have good days and bad days.”
Folks, human beings do not live on an even plane with every day a good day, and it’s a good thing when we realize that truth.
We have a tendency to rejoice when all is well, and to fall apart when it’s not.
I know people who show by their face how their day is going.
They can’t hide it.
They smile and act full of life when things are going good.
But, when it’s not so good they pout and complain and appear defeated by their problems.
In today’s lesson, there are three simple truths that will help us when we face difficult times.
1. (Truth No. 1) Storms (troubles) do not mean that God is showing His disapproval of something we have said or done.
When we have troubles, it doesn’t mean that God is mad at us.
2. (Truth No. 2) To be in a stormy (troubled) moment is not sinful.
Trouble comes to all of us; no one is off the hook when it comes to life’s problems.
3. (Truth No. 3) There are anchors to hold us steady in times of stress.
So we need to know what the anchors are.
Our text shows that Paul’s experiences support these truths.
I’ll read Acts, chapter 27, verses 13-36.
Here is where Paul is being taken to Rome by ship.
A storm threatens to sink the ship, but God has other plans for Paul.
This is how the experience is recorded in God’s word.
READ FROM THE LIVING NEW TESTAMENT
Paul had four anchors that held him steady just like the four anchors on the ship.
The first anchor: He Had a Firm Faith in God.
We can see his faith in the statement he made to the sailors, in verse 23:
“…last night an angel of the God (to whom I belong and whom I serve) stood beside me..”
Paul believed with all his heart that God was real, and that he was a child of God, and he served God as well as he could, even when he was under arrest and his life was in danger.
Faith in God is absolutely essential to sustaining a steady nature and a good spirit.
If you believe in God, and you were saved through faith in His Son, you can have this same assurance that removes all doubts, about the outcome.
Believing in God leads to the knowledge that God is in control; He’s in control of our lives and everything that surrounds us.
He is powerful.
I don’t believe that we have any idea just how powerful He is.
And think about it; He’s on our side, He’s for us and He’s always close.
When we are in trouble, we can count on our God to help us.
Even though He doesn’t always remove our troubles, He will always give us the grace to get through the trouble.
God always has the final say in every situation.
There’s a good example of that in the 3rd chapter of Daniel.
Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego were young Hebrews who had been deported to Babylon, but they excelled their captors in intelligence and ability.
Therefore, King Nebuchadnezzar promoted them to be “over the affairs of the province of Babylon.”
That resulted in a jealousy among the Babylonians who were passed over, in favor of these three Hebrew children.
When Nebuchadnezzar set up a huge image of himself, and then ordered everyone in his kingdom to bow before it, these three Hebrews refused.
Their enemies were quick to inform the king, because he had declared that the penalty for refusing to worship his image was death; death by being tossed into a burning fiery furnace.
Nebuchadnezzar ordered the three men brought to him, since he could not imagine that anyone would not obey his orders.
When they were questioned by the king, he gave them the choice of life or death.
They could continue as rulers over the province of Babylon, if they worshipped the image.
But if they refused, they would be tossed into the burning fiery furnace that Nebuchadnezzar had prepared and he even had it heated seven times hotter than ever before.
But listen to the reply of these three brave men.