One of life’s great experiences is an Atlantic crossing. Wife Shirley and I have done it twice, one on the Queen Mary and another on the Liberte – both grand ocean liners – the first from London to New York and the second from France.
For the uninitiated, it’s hard to describe the feeling of leaving dry land and moving with baggage onto a floating city, a grand hotel quietly pulled by tugboats into the harbor before magnificently gliding out to sea.
From then till the far harbor is reached, the trip is one long, luxurious revelation – whether you’re in third class or in a top-level suite. Out in the middle of the Atlantic Ocean, surrounded by the breathtaking expanse of sea and sky, but with all the comforts and relative freedom of home, with every personal need or whim looked after by friendly attendants. For most, it’s even better than home!
We were young parents on that first voyage, on the Queen Mary, and with our four kids looked after by loving grandparents back home, we enjoyed a second honeymoon. We were excited to see the Statue of Liberty returning to New York, but were not anxious to have the journey end.
But the second! A very, very different experience.
Two days out from Paris, the Liberte encountered rough seas, which turned into a violent storm! And I mean violent! Passengers on every level were tossed about, in their cabins and staterooms, like popcorn. Arms and legs were broken, heads banged against ceilings, crashes and screams were barely heard over the constant thudding of the prow and sides of this giant vessel being lifted and dropped with unimaginable force!
Feeling myself right in the middle of a cataclysmic, dangerous drama, I couldn’t stand just riding it out in our stateroom. Shirley thought I was crazy when I wrestled on my trench coat and announced I was going topside, right out into the storm, to see with my own eyes the very elements fighting over us.
So she went with me, saying if I disappeared she wanted to know what had happened.
Again, I can’t adequately describe what we witnessed, what we experienced, together. But standing just below the huge smokestacks on the top of the ship, holding on for dear life – literally – we saw huge waves raging in every direction, bashing us to and fro like a leaf in a washing machine, the prow up ahead dipping into the coming avalanche of water, and the waves pouring over as if to plunge us bottomward, then sweeping back to crash against the helm where the captain and his crew were battling for our survival. The noise of the bashing elements was so incredibly loud that we couldn’t hear each other at all. We seemed suddenly so small, and we could almost feel ourselves writhing beneath those colossal waves, lost forever at sea, never to be seen again by those we love.
And this was a huge ocean liner that had seemed so invincible, so potentially impervious to anything it might encounter. It seemed so safe, indestructible and unfazed by winds or waves – like the El Faro, the mighty cargo ship that was lost just a few days ago in the usually peaceful Caribbean. I’m sure the captain of that vessel and the crew of 23 felt absolutely safe even as Hurricane Joaquin grew around it and the 50-foot waves slapped against it. It was so heavily laden with its cargo, so balanced and well constructed … what could possibly threaten it?
But then the waves kept coming from the same direction and retreating to the other side, gradually tilting the giant vessel on its side – and to the bottom of the raging sea, with cargo and all on board.
Do you not see that’s exactly what’s happening to our Ship of State, that wondrous behemoth called America?
The Bible warns ominously, “If the foundations be destroyed, what shall the righteous do?”
Our foundations, the moral and spiritual pillars on which our very society and government are built, are being chipped away, eroded and destroyed like so much plaster of Paris.
In the very name of tolerance, the”intolerance” of opposing views is being outlawed. In the guise of “women’s rights” an estimated 40 million incipient, developing women have been destroyed on the altar of expedience or convenience. The other 20 million or so are males – so who cares about them?
In the name of “reproductive rights,” Planned Parenthood is involved in the harvesting and sales of infant body parts. Oh, they vehemently deny it, saying the actual videotapes of similar butchery weren’t on their premises and under their specific direction, and that after all, they do so many other things for women – as if they’re the only organization that does the same things, the others doing so without offering and promoting abortion. And our president funds their activities with billions of our tax dollars – to the conscious exclusion of women’s organizations that help other women in every way but abortion.
Friend, this administration seems literally hell-bent on silencing Christians, taking away private gun ownership, opening our borders to illegals and even promising them schooling, health care, driver’s licenses and especially voting rights, while he and his appointed attorney general announced they didn’t intend to enforce immigration laws!
The current captain of our ship thumbs his nose at the Constitution and to the intended equal authority of Congress. He and his hoped-for successors actively promote homosexual activists, Muslims and actual Communists to created regulatory positions, gathering to themselves uninhibited, absolutely unconstitutional powers.
Can you not feel this ship tilting to its side, dangerously close to capsizing? If Communists and Islamists were to create and put in place a puppet to do their bidding, toward the actual destruction of our very vessel, they could hardly have furthered their purpose better than this president has. Trading known terrorist leaders already in custody for a pathetic deserter, claiming “we never leave our own behind.” Negotiating with our sworn enemy, guaranteeing they will have nuclear capability, and even granting them billions of dollars to fund their goals of destroying Israel and America – this isn’t just a nightmare.
It’s real. It’s happening. Our ship is sinking. Can’t you feel it?