Let God Blow Us
Some went down to the sea in ships, doing business on the great waters; they saw the deeds of the Lord, his wondrous works in the deep. Psalm 107: 23
Brendan chose fourteen monks from his community, took them to the chapel, and made this proposal to them: ‘My dear fellow soldiers in the spiritual war, I beg your help because my heart is set upon a single desire. If it be God’s will, I want to seek out the Island of Promise of which our forefathers spoke. Will you come with me? What are your feelings?’ As soon as he had finished speaking, the monks replied with one voice: ‘Father, your desire is ours also…’ When all was ready Brendan ordered his monks aboard, the sail was hoisted, and the coracle was swept out to sea. For the next two weeks the wind was fair, so that they did no more than steady the sail. But then the wind fell, and they had to row, day after day. When their strength eventually failed, Brendan comforted them: ‘Have no fear, brothers, for God is our captain and our pilot; so take in the oars, and set the sail, letting him blow us where he wills.’
From the Life of Brendan the Navigator
Brothers and sisters, God is calling you to leave behind everything that stops you setting sail in the ocean of God’s love. You have heard the call of the Wild Goose, the untamable Spirit of God: be ready for him to lead you into wild, windy or well-worn places in the knowledge that he will make them places of wonder and welcome. He is giving you the vision of a spoiled creation being restored to harmony with its Creator, of a fragmented world becoming whole, of a weakened church being restored to its mission, of healed lands being lit up by the radiance of the glorious Trinity. In stillness or storm, be always vigilant, waiting, sharing, praising, blessing, telling. Sail forth across the ocean of God’s world knowing both the frailty of your craft and the infinite riches of your God.
From the First Voyage of the Coracle, Community of Aidan and Hilda
Dear God, be good to us;
Your sea is so wide,
And our boats are so small.
Prayer of the Breton fishermen