A perpetual breeze dances across the ocean, flitting up and down coastlines, bringing with it the smell of salt and a taste of freedom. To me, this breeze is one of the joys of spending time seaside. However, these gentle winds can build, all too quickly, to violent storms that capsize ships, batter shores, damage property, and destroy lives.
People who live near the coast or make their living on the sea pay close attention to the weather. They watch forecasts and heed warning signs. They board up their windows, move their valued belongings to higher ground, or leave altogether until the danger has passed. Sailors batten down hatches and furl their sails to ride out inevitable storms. Where possible, they hunker down in port to avoid the beating that nature can dole out.
There are some, however, who refuse to shelter in safe places. Often, they bear the brunt of nature’s fury. The resulting devastation can be difficult or impossible to overcome and affects other people as well.
As Ziggy once said, “a little rain falls into every life, followed by sleet, hail and damaging winds.” This humorous statement holds water. We all face difficulties at one time or another, usually due to no fault of our own. And we all must learn to cope. However, sometimes our choices land us directly in the path of gale-force winds.
We should take a lesson from mariners and coast-dwellers. Prepare against the storms of life. Don’t seek them out. The easiest way to do this? Choose what is right. Over and over again. Of course, we’re none of us perfect, but if we form the habit of trying to do right, we’re much less likely to find ourselves suffering amid a storm of violence, addictions, accusations…the list goes on.
What is it about human nature that causes us to sometimes seek out trouble from which we ought to flee? How have you avoided problems that could’ve wrecked your life or harmed the ones you love?