Since much time had been lost and sailing was now dangerous . . . (Acts 27:9a)
In Acts 27, Paul is literally sailing dangerous waters. Winds swirled, waters raged, and neither sun nor moon nor stars shone their light, plunging the crew into utter darkness (both literally and figuratively. The crew did everything they could to weather the storm, but nothing worked; cargo and lives were lost, and feared welled up in the remaining crew.
The literal storm in which Paul found himself reminds me of the figurative storm in which we find ourselves. And the literal ship in which Paul found himself reminds me of the figurative ship in which we find ourselves – our sanctuary (like many sanctuaries) is designed to replicate the hull of a ship, of an ark. It reminds us of the protective powers of God who has time and time again helped to weather storms – from Noah to Jesus to Paul to us. – rc