Adjusting the Sails

“Have mercy on me, O God, have mercy! I look to You for protection. I will hide beneath the shadow of Your wings until this violent storm is past. I cry out to God Most high, to God who will fulfill His purpose for me. He will send help from heaven to save me…My God will send forth His unfailing love and faithfulness.” (1)

I bear the marks of a broken heart. My precious son Michael and his dad Bill were brutally shot and killed. Shocked and confused, I stood in horror as my life turned upside down. Shortly afterwards, I penned these words in an allegory describing what I was going through.

Sitting on the white sands by the ocean I saw a tranquil beauty across the wide spans of water. Feeling the ocean breeze brush against my face I recall those years of rest from the quiet waters of inner peace. Relationships around me were rich and pleasurable with happy family memories. They surfaced a deep sense of satisfaction on the seas of life. Suddenly, swirls of wind moved around me and I was frightened.

Consciously I became aware of a fierce storm brought me back to a present day threat which took control of my life. The beauty of what was – is sometimes a harsh reality of the crumbling present day circumstances. I am now, trying to piece together an evil attack of murder that has swept havoc into my life. Similar to the storm which hit my life, the waves of sea began to toss back and forth as they aroused my apparent awareness of change. Swirls of wind picked up and within minutes the fierce winds grew stronger and stronger. They raged at almost uncontrollable strength similar to the sudden attack of violence that consumed every part of life. It seemed what appeared as an insupportable force became the outward manifestation of a bitter hurricane pushing strong against me. The fierce downpour of rain demanded all my attention. Like a bitter hurricane the aftershock of murder left me crippled and broken as it consumed me with fear. I felt the raging path was aimed to destroy me, leaving little room for repair. Hope was restored when the eye of the storm covered me with God’s presence.

The eye of the storm has taken its position when the Almighty God interrupted the rain and the air became still. The magnitude of God’s greatness covers my soul as He has enabled me to stand, ever so, by His sustaining power. Under the authority of His bid my adversity was granted.

Remaining presently in the menacing storm the skies are gray where my thoughts are difficult to comprehend. When my emotions are torn apart by circumstances, I feel the Lord’s inner voice whisper “Be Still”. His gentle Spirit assures me He is near. God has proven how mighty His strength is to me as I see how weak the threat of the storm has become.  I feel reassured by confirmation though Scriptures God is in control.

“(Jesus)…got up and rebuked the wind and said to the sea. “Hush, and be still. And the wind died down and it became perfectly calm (2).”

God intervened at the lowest point of my life. I did not know the outcome of my future. All I knew was a crushing pain and the scars murder left on my heart. I wrote this dialog after a suspect was arrested for the murders of Bill and Mike. Trial was pending. It is now ten years after my love one’s death. All court procedures are complete.

How did I make it this far? What made the difference when life fell apart? How could I survive two homicides?

“We cannot direct the wind, but we can adjust the sails.” (3)

While on those turbulent waters I struggled to survive. I thought my life was over…destroyed forever. In God’s great mercy He preserved my life when He heard my desperate cry and rescued me. He taught me how to adjust the sails by choosing to walk closer with Jesus. God revealed to me that if I depended on self-confidence, I’d miss the pure light that shines through Christ in the radiant beauty of His personal delivery. God used the winds of adversity to direct me into brighter rays of faith where Christ’s light shone into my heart. As I fixed my gaze on the unseen power of God’s salvation, I found liberty. I learned when I was powerless over life’s challenges, I found fresh strength through God.

My greatest joys are resting in the arms of Jesus.

Years gone by, I am able to see more clearly that Christ is Lord over everything! Even those things I cannot comprehend.  I’ve learned to rest in the sufficiency of Christ.  Confidently, I am refreshed and able to live once again.


1. Psalm 57:1-3 nlt

2. Mark 4:39 (kjv)

3.. Bertha Colloway

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