Scripture Reading:

James 1:1-18

When you ask, you must believe and not doubt, because the one who doubts is like a wave of the sea, blown and tossed by the wind.

James 1:6

There is a seafarers’ mission in Hong Kong that, rather than waiting for ships to come to the dock as most missions do, sends chaplains out to visit seafarers anchored in the harbor. The chaplains travel to the ships on small boats. When a ship is out in the harbor, visitors need to climb up the side on a rope ladder in order to get on board. Though it is safe, the rope ladder can sway back and forth a lot, out in the midst of the wind and waves.

I once visited the Hong Kong mission and had the opportunity to board ships out in the harbor. At the first ship, our small boat bobbed up and down several meters at a time. I was given one key piece of advice: “You must commit.” It would not work to let your doubts stop you halfway while reaching out for the ladder. You had to lean out of the boat to grab on, and if you had doubts about grabbing the ladder, you could plunge into the cold swells of the ocean.

James understood the problems of doubt. Doubts in our hearts can create our own internal storms. We cannot find solid footing when our lives are blown and tossed about by winds of our own making. Committing to the Lord helps us to move through the challenges of life, knowing that the testing of faith produces perseverance.

Lord Jesus, help us to commit our lives to you. Keep our feet firm in your Word and hold us tightly in your love. In your name, Amen.

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