A convention of the leaders of all faiths, on a sinking ship, and still no agreement!
Ship of Fools
A meeting of the religious leaders of the world aboard the largest ocean liner ... so none could walk out ... came to a disasterous end when the ship had a hunk ripped from its' underside. Lifeboats were launched leaving aboard only the heads of the various faiths, the captain, the navigator and a women.
The woman, a Christian, had been in the toilet during the evacuation so had been overlooked. Blond, middle-aged, the Rabbi, Cardinal, Muslim, Hindu, Friar, etc. paid her little mind while they discussed who first should climb in the remaining lifeboats.
"I think the Cardinal should board first as he's closest to the Pope and is the oldest on board," argued the Captain.
"But Mohammad came before the Catholic religion ...," the Muslim protested.
"The Jews have suffered enough, I shall board."
Others pulled the Rabbi aside.
The priests of far east have existed the longest of any of the holy men.
Meanwhile, the lady brought bottles of water, power bars, blankets, and a first aid kit to place in the lifeboats.
The navigator struggled to help the captain keep the peace between those leaders.
"We must leave soon. The ship is sinking!" The exasperated captain explained yet again.
Still, the men pushed, shoved and argued on principle, the dates their religion was founded, who was closer to God, etc.
Patiently waiting for the men, the lady remembered to get some flares and a flare gun, a GPS locator and thin sheets to cover their heads when the sun was its' hottest.
She went to the bathroom again. Got some aspirin and bandages from the cabinet.
Topside, the woman decided to climb into the lifeboat. The navigator, nervous at the tilt of the ship, jumped in alongside her with his compass in hand. Slowly, in case some of the others wanted to leave now, the captain lowered the boat.
Once in the water, the pair of them gasped as the ship decisively tilted its' bow and disappeared into the ocean.
Quietly the woman prayed while the navigator fumbled with his compass.
She fell asleep, having put her faith and fears in Gods' hands.
The navigator continued to fumble with the compass until, exhausted, he dropped it. "Oh, my God! Oh, my God!
Frantically he leaned over, scooping water up and letting it run out in hopes of grabbing hold of the
compass again. Suddenly spying something shiny just a short distance away, the man dove into the water.
The woman, curious, sat up and watched him. "I can't swim! Don't go far as you'll have to swim back too."
"Don't worry about me, ma'am." He called back. "I know what I'm doing."
He swam and swam and swam till she lost sight of him ... on account of a compass.
She prayed for him, for those that went down with the ship and for herself ... that God would watch over her and send a rescue party.
Several days later, between the hot days (her head covered with the sheet then) and her needs met by the power bars and bottles of water, a ship spotted her floating freely in the water. Finding her sleeping, curled up like a fetus, they feared the worse.
However, she woke with no complaints and allowed them to help her board the rescue ship.
"Ma'am," the captain and ship's doctor hovered over her, "are there any more survivors?"
"I don't think so."
"How did you manage by yourself for these past several days?"
She smiled. "I took provisions ... just in case, and a change of clothes, blankets, and mostly, I prayed."
"How did you manage to take provisions aboard when the others' had no time to escape?
"Oh, they had time but they were too busy debating DETAILS!"
"Yes, who would take which boat, who would be in charge, who would get on first."
"I prayed and gave God my body, my soul and my spirit. I put it in His hands." She smiled. "There was a rather horrid storm yesterday, you know. I slept through it. Sometimes we must 'do.' Other times there's nothing we CAN do so we must trust.
I gave my life unto God; I trusted Him 100%. He took care of the details."
Arguing, staging wars, over how to pray and whom to pray to sometimes keeps us from remembering the most important aspect of faith: prayer! It can move mountains but without it nothing is accomplished.
copyright 2008 Sandra S. Corona